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Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Night Horrors: The Tormented
Part 7: Help, I Broke It

So, suppose a Promethean is stuck and needs to at least shift Roles. Suppose she didn't. Suppose she kept ignoring the Wastelands and Firestorms, the Azothic memory's warnings, and so on. Suppose her Pilgrimage completely stalled out. What happens? Well, her Azoth would die, its fires burned out, and she would lose her free will and intellect. What would be left over would just be a mindless drone automatically acting out the Role she got stuck on. When alone or outside of that Role, she would only be capable of being a meat robot - eating to survive, staring at walls unblinking. When able to act within the Role, sure, she can pretend to be a person and act like everything is fine, but it's not. Any attempt at mind reading, at any time, reveals exactly zero thoughts. There is no conscious mind - everything is instinctual. This is a Petrificatus.

Petrificati, also called the Stuck or Automatons, would be merely a sad failure state if it weren't for two issues. First, they can still perform the generative act. Whenever a Petrificatus gets near a dead body, they instinctively seek it out and perform the same rite that brought them to life. They cannot, however, harness the Divine Fire to create a new Promethean - just another petrificatus with a Role based on the body's former situation in life, or Pandorans. Pandorans ignore petrificati, as they contain no Divine Fire within them. Because petrificati are no less resilient than Prometheans, however, you can end up with entire communities of mindless robots that seem alive only when working within their assigned Roles...and if one of those Roles is murderous or is assigned to work with corpses, the numbers just keep going up. Your second issue is that any Vitriol the petrificatus had upon 'death' is still stored inside them. It could easily be harvested - or a bad injury could rupture its containment and melt the creature down. Centimani, sublimati and alchemists all therefore hunt rumors of strangely blank, robotic people in hopes of an easy score. How Vitriol shows up in petrificati that were never Prometheans is a mystery to everyone.

There are no recorded instances of petrificati returning to life as Prometheans, not even in the Azothic memory. This doesn't stop more optimistic Prometheans from trying to get them back on track, but so far, no one has figured out how to do it or if it's even possible. Until such time as someone manages it, the petrificati will only be a sad reminder of the dangers of the Pilgrimage and a potential threat to other Prometheans. Mechanically, to become a petrificatus, a Promethean must remain in a completed Role for a year and a day, must not be part of a branded throng, and must never have made another Promethean. If all of those are true, then after that timer is up, their Azoth and Pilgrimage stats drop by 1 each week past the year-and-a-day limit, until both hit zero. At that point, you're a petrificatus. The 'branded throng' bit means this will essentially never happen to PCs, especially on the timescale required.

Petrificati can't use either Bestowments (the natural abilities of their Lineage) or Transmutations (the magic powers from their Refinement). They have no Azoth, so they can't be detected by Azothic radiance, and they don't cause Disquiet, Firestorms or Wastelands, and they can't have their Measure taken (the natural ability of Prometheans to sense each other's basic power levels). They cannot gain or use Pyros by any means, do not wake dormant Pandorans with their presence and provide no sustenance to Pandorans. They do still have the insane endurance of normal Prometheans, but cannot return from death. They do heal from electricity but don't gain Pyros from it. They do not take aggravated damage from fire, as they no longer contain the Divine Fire within them. Their disfigurements remain visible to Prometheans. When acting within their Role, they have 4 dice for all Role-related actions. Outside it, they are only able to walk to safe areas, feed themselves and weakly bat at attackers. They automatically fail all non-Role and concealment actions, but mortals typically explain away any strange behavior as due to stress, overwork or similar. Any attempts to read their thoughts fail because there's nothing to read.

All Petrificati contain at least some Vitriol, and produce more by making more Petrificati. If they take sufficient damage - less needed the more Vitriol they have - then the Vitriol within them erupts, causing them to take further damage as the acid eats away at their bodies. If the attack that damaged them was Bashing, that's it - they just take damage until they melt. If it was lethal or aggravated, the Vitriol sprays outwards and burns everyone nearby using the rules for a chemical fire. Obviously, this can only happen once - after it happens, all the Vitriol is gone. Vitriol that leaks or explodes out cannot be stolen for any purpose, Promethean or alchemical.

Any time a petrificatus encounters a dead body or severely injured person, their behavior outside their Role shifts. Instead of seeking food or shelter, they seek out the body or person and attempt the generative act. If the target was living but injured and helpless, the petrificatus will kill them in the process. They then make a roll based on the Vitriol within them - often at a penalty, as it gets harder the longer the body was dead. This means it's often a chance die. A dramatic failure or failure will spawn at least one Pandoran. Success turns the victim into a petrificatus, usually after several days.

Next time: The Agony Aunt, the Frozen Boy

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JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!


How do you get non Promethean petris?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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They get made by another petrificatus.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!


Oooh, right.

The grey (flesh) goo.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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More an extremely unaggressive zombie apocalypse, but yes.

Chernobyl Peace Prize
May 7, 2007

Or later, later's fine.
But now would be good.



Since Promethean is basically "living in the Rust Belt or rural midwest: The Game" I love Petrificati a whole lot.

By popular demand
Jul 17, 2007

IT *BZZT* WASP ME--
IT WASP ME ALL *BZZT* ALONG!




The Chiron Group probably would really appreciate Petrificati, mindless slave labour for only the price of food and minimal lodgings!

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Night Horrors: The Tormented
Part 7: The P In P-Zombie Is For Protector


Petrificati don't have to be disliked by those around them.

Cathy, a Galateid, first awakened in a water pumping station, wrapped in newspapers. Her creator was dead beside her of a self-inflicted shotgun wound. She took her name from the newspapers' advice column, Cathy Counsels, and she still carries those newspapers around constantly, with a flower pressed between each page. She did more than use them to learn about people - they were her guide to life. From the advice columns, she was led onto the Refinement of Iron and more specifically the role of Martyr, seeking humanity by enduring pain. Cathy Counsels always said the best solution was to stick to it and endure hardships while reaching your goal, after all. When a man made of fire told her she had to move on and locked her out of the station, she ignored him and took to living under the sky. When the neighborhood became coated in poison ivy and kudzu and everyone started fighting, then moved away, she endured. When it started to rain acid and fire, she endured. She made a martyr of herself, allowing her own Divine Fire within to die. Now, she wanders alone, eating kudzu and coming alive only to suffer.

Cathy dresses in clothes stolen from laundromats and clotheslines, so she looks a mess. She explores the Wasteland she created before falling to petrificatus status like a homeless queen, her frizzy auburn hair spreading out widely. She is tall, willowy and confident in her demeanor. She steals and scavenges, piling up what she takes around the closed pumping station, and it is only when she leaves the Wasteland that she changes again. Then, she is hesitant and afraid, like a child avoiding parental abuse. She steps between muggers and their victims, scared but defiant. She blocks abuse with her own body, smiling for whoever she protects. She gives away anything she has to people that need them, insisting they take it no matter what. She preaches self-reliance and helps others. Then she returns to the Wasteland and becomes the vacant queen of emptiness again.

The Disquiet Cathy caused before her transformation lingers, and while Cathy can no longer be the target of the anger of those around her, that anger isn't gone. The people that still remain in Cathy's Wasteland will latch onto the first Promethean they encounter as the cause of their anger and take it out on them. If it were possible to bring Cathy out of her fugue, you'd need to find out more about her maker. He had a throng and a Pilgrimage, and perhaps in tracing that, Cathy's Azoth could be rekindled. Or maybe not. Either way, the homeless still talk about their vigilante. She blocks attackers and gives advice, ignoring any wounds she takes. Without Disquiet, they are not afraid or angry at her, and debate if she is, in fact, a savior. They like Cathy.


Frostbite sucks.

Randall was a boy with an abusive, alcoholic mother. She beat him and tossed him out in the snow, but at least he had a car. He'd worked hard to earn the money to buy it, and he was glad of it. He parked it behind the fast food place where he worked, and for two nights it was fine. He'd wash up in the place's bathroom, he'd wake up at midnight to turn on the heater, and he'd go to school in the mornings, work in the afternoon and read with a flashlight by night. On the third night the blizzard hit, and the snow covered over the entire car and filled the tailpipe. It was three days before anyone found Randall - and what found him wasn't rescue. It was something that didn't think or breathe, but it moved, and it gave the same life back to Randall, in a sense. Or, at least, something went to work the next day wearing his face.

Randall is a pale, pimply teenager with a thin nose, curly black hair, a bit of a gut and a vacant stare. He smiles politely and asks how he can help, is prompt with his work, rarely makes errors and seems eager to please. He complains about being cold often enough that his manager has given him a spare sweater out of sympathy. When not acting in his Role, Randall stands behind the restaurant near his car. He frequently holds an open book to his face. When he must eat, he takes congealed frying oil from the trash. If anyone stops in the parking lot, he wanders around the block, holding his book. He responds to his name only when working. To anyone that can see Promethean disfigurements, Randall is gruesome. His ears are blackened by frostbite, he's missing the tip of his nose, and his mouth and teeth are grease-stained. His hands are burnt to a crisp from stealing food out of the fryers when no one is looking. He always smells of rancid grease and burnt meat. He is, in theory, Osiran.

Randall has not yet made another petrificatus, but not for lack of trying. He's found many dead or dying people in the area around the restaurant due to the blizzards striking the homeless. He's attempted the generative act, but so far all he's produced are Pandorans, which now litter the area. Some alchemists working out of the local hospital are tracking him. They aren't particularly interested in Randall himself, but in his genitor. They suspect he was brought back by a petrificatus known as the Wretched Thing, the oldest currently active known petrificatus. If so, she would be in the area and ripe with Vitriol for harvest - but she is known to be very protective of her creations. On the other hand, he might have been made by the one called the Stasher, a petrificatus that compulsively steals Athanors (mystically charged objects that Prometheans can use for various purposes on the Pilgrimage) and other artifacts, then sews them into the petrificati it creates. It was definitely in the area at the time of the blizzard - and that means if it made Randall, something valuable is inside the boy's body.


ACAB, but especially this one.

Julie Cheng was amazing. She got a scholarship for track, was top of her class in college with a degree in criminal science, and as a uniformed cop she made several high-profile arrests. Everything was perfect. However, she had a dark side - an adrenaline addiction fed by extreme sports, plus a tendency to overdo alcohol and drugs. Perhaps that's what caused her accident - she missed a knife, perhaps from rushing or perhaps from fatigue or maybe just bad luck. Her partner bled out from a pierced kidney in Julie's arms. It drove her addictions into the open - in a bad way. She missed work, got demoted and ended up back on the beat. Seeking more thrills, she eventually went out spelunking in the hills, where the thing everyone never talked about lived. She didn't come back - only the Good Cop did.

Julie appears to be a Chinese woman of slightly below average height. She's muscular and quick, and she has a razor-thin scar along her neck that no one can remember her getting. She's got that thousand yard stare that screams PTSD, the appetite of someone half her age, and a knack for doing paperwork. She's a poor conversationalist these days, of course. Her partner drives the car, she shoots well enough on the range, she eats whatever is in front of her and she writes in block capitals. Exclusively. Her colleagues only see the old Julie when she's chasing down a suspect. Her partner, however, knows she can't be left with them. After she's done laughing through the arrest, she goes away and the Bad Cop comes out. She goes even more blank than before and beats suspects - no matter what they're doing. She's even attacked a coworker once. She spent the night in the drunk tank to cool down and seemed fine the next morning.

Julie's killed someone - or rather, Bad Cop did. She and her partner, Jeff, didn't call it in. They dumped the body in a shallow grave in the woods. When Jeff went back to check on things, though, the body was gone. Julie just grunts if he asks about it, and more than once she's come back to work with dirt under her nails. The thing on the outskirts, incidentally? Four-armed and a centimanus. He's been studying petrificati for 20 years and keeps a collection of them. He's always happy to have them revive a body brought in by someone desperate. If not...well, he's happy to slit a throat and have them raise that. Bad Cop's his favorite among his "pets" for bringing him so many new 'toys.'

More philosophically, some Prometheans wonder about the nature of Torment, and if Petrificati, which lack true emotion, can experience it. It seems like it'd be one way to explain why Julie Cheng has two apparent Roles in the forms of Good Cop and Bad Cop. On the other hand, it's possible that Bad Cop is merely the dark side of her thrill-seeking behavior, given her Role as Daredevil...but it wouldn't explain why Bad Cop is so fixated on violence and murder. Whatever the case, someone's going to have to do something, because Julie is literally unable to stop, and she's going to drop more bodies.

Next time: Pandorans, the Unborn.

Chernobyl Peace Prize
May 7, 2007

Or later, later's fine.
But now would be good.



By popular demand posted:

The Chiron Group probably would really appreciate Petrificati, mindless slave labour for only the price of food and minimal lodgings!
It's all fun and games until one fucks up the replication process and you end up with Pandorans who munch all the others and get super-buff.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!


Mors Rattus posted:

More an extremely unaggressive zombie apocalypse, but yes.

By the way, how do you safely extract Vitriol from these Promethean Ford Pintos?

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Chernobyl Peace Prize posted:

It's all fun and games until one fucks up the replication process and you end up with Pandorans who munch all the others and get super-buff.

Then it's downright profitable.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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JcDent posted:

By the way, how do you safely extract Vitriol from these Promethean Ford Pintos?

Knock them out and cut them open carefully.

By popular demand
Jul 17, 2007

IT *BZZT* WASP ME--
IT WASP ME ALL *BZZT* ALONG!




Alchemists must be the biggest chumps ever: a bio automaton janitor who just needs table scraps and a mangy cot in the basement is waaay better than whatever magical nightmare juice you can extract from its corpse.

No amount of lead turned to gold is valuable enough to be worth it.

Green Intern
Dec 29, 2008

Loon, Crazy and Laughable



Get a lab-safe turkey baster?

Ego Trip
Aug 28, 2012

A tenacious little mouse!




Does the Pilgrimage normally have a time limit? Or is that just Hollows?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Ego Trip posted:

Does the Pilgrimage normally have a time limit? Or is that just Hollows?

One century from your creation. A Promethean doesn't age, but has one hundred years to complete the Pilgrimage or they just die. The century timer gets reset if they die and return to life.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!


Mors Rattus posted:

One century from your creation. A Promethean doesn't age, but has one hundred years to complete the Pilgrimage or they just die. The century timer gets reset if they die and return to life.

And how hard is that?

So far we have what, one or two who Petrified themselves and the rest are just corpses animated by Petris? So as far as a Promethean is concerned, those are just temporarily ambulatory Vitriol pinyadas?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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JcDent posted:

And how hard is that?

So far we have what, one or two who Petrified themselves and the rest are just corpses animated by Petris? So as far as a Promethean is concerned, those are just temporarily ambulatory Vitriol pinyadas?

Dying is fairly hard. Coming back...well, most Prometheans can manage it a grand total of once. Osirans get a few more than that, but it's costly. Each time you come back, Osiran or not, you lose a dot of Azoth.

Petrificati are Vitriol pinates...if you're okay with murdering them. Because, y'know, a lot of Prometheans aren't. The idea of killing someone and eating their magic experience juice is generally something most Prometheans consider disgusting and cruel.

e: of course, you can argue that it's not murder because Petrificati are mindless, but it's still something most Prometheans think of as Wrong.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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


So, what do you do with these guys for adventures or are they just there as set dressing/something that attracts foolish rear end in a top hat wizards to cause you trouble?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Night10194 posted:

So, what do you do with these guys for adventures or are they just there as set dressing/something that attracts foolish rear end in a top hat wizards to cause you trouble?

You interact with them and decide if you want to save them (even if it's not possible) and how you feel about them and if it's right to kill them. Because the arc of a Promethean campaign is 'how do you be human' rather than a more standard game arc, and your actual goal is 'figure out what the correct human thing to do is about this, because you're trying really hard to learn how to human.'

e: like, in any other game, I would agree that they're basically set dressing. In Promethean, the goal is to learn life lessons and become a better person so you can turn into a real boy.

ChaseSP
Mar 25, 2013



Yeah they're pretty interesting foils to Promethean pcs and I can imagine getting good use out of them.

By popular demand
Jul 17, 2007

IT *BZZT* WASP ME--
IT WASP ME ALL *BZZT* ALONG!




'Cut open and suck that sweet bile from their innards' is admittedly a rare behaviour for a human.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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


Yes, I understand that, but they're kinda not especially interactable. Just a small thing you run into once or twice, not something I'd see getting a ton of full writeups.

But then this whole book seems to have a little bit of a problem of, ah, Promethean doesn't seem like a game that needs a specific 'enemy book' the way something like Woof does. It's about a different kind of conflict, mostly.

Pieces of Peace
Jul 8, 2006
Hazardous in small doses.

Mors Rattus posted:

e: of course, you can argue that it's not murder because Petrificati are mindless, but it's still something most Prometheans think of as Wrong.

It makes sense that inhuman constructs made from corpses, striving to become fully human, wouldn't want to narrow the definition of who's human and deserves empathy… that way lies just a little bit of backstabbing and self-destruction.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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That's why I managed to cover all of them in basically two posts. We're done with Petrificati. That was it - those three examples and the rules to make them.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Night Horrors: The Tormented
Part 8: Goblins


The downside of Pandorans is they're mostly just...gribbly monsters, not people.

Cavins exist because abandoned mines are really good spots for Prometheans to hide. Humans avoid them for safety, but the dangerous are not much to Prometheans, and even without supernatural stuff they tend to collect myths and legends to make people stay out. There's often stuff worth scavenging or even chemicals for use in alchemy. They're private and ideal for the generative act, as long as you have a light source. However, when that goes wrong in the depths...well, what comes out skitters into the dark, taking on solidity from the stones to form a rock-like shell or chrysalis. In one cave, the creator just kept trying, making more and more of the critters - rock-like Pandorans known as Cavins. It's a mangling of the word 'cave-in,' due to their habitat. Most remain in or around the tunnels of their birth to attack Prometheans that seek shelter. Some wander out and infiltrate nearby communities, merging with mountains or being mistaken for interestingly-shaped rocks and put on display. They wait until a Promethean gets near them, then descend on their prey like an avalanche.

Cavins, while active, are roughly humanoid, resembling a twisted goblin made of onyx. Their skin is more stone than anything else and tough to pierce, which helps them wear down prey. They aren't very fast or smart, but they can set crude traps to keep someone locked in a room and are able to rig rock collapses or pit traps to slow prey down. Like many simple Pandorans, they prefer to hunt in packs, even packs that aren't made of Cavins. When Dormant, they curl up and form a rocky casing around themselves. Their shell's luster changed with the light, making it appear to be a lump of rock when outside, while in a cave's darkness it looks more like part of a coal vein. They tend to prefer caves near the surface - that way, they're close enough to sense the arrival of Prometheans nearby while remaining safely out of the way.

Because of the random, wandering nature of the Cavins' genitor, just about any cave or tunnel could have them. They largely act without direction and they avoid humans whenever possible, so many humans won't notice any dangers. Centimani often enjoy experimenting with Cavins, as they are simple, sturdy, easy to hide when Dormant and typically come in groups that can serve as multiple baseline test subjects. They're also easy prey for alchemists. It's super easy to disguise study of one as simple chemistry or geology, and they make for a decent defense system in case Prometheans invade the lab.

Cavins are not smart, but they're cunning, resilient as hell and strong-willed. They're slow, though, and can't really do much but set basic traps and hit things. Their main problem is they're made of rocks, so hurting them is hard.


I have no idea why it's so furry.

Generally speaking, it's not a good idea to give birth in the back of a car, but when you're being chased by a mob and don't want to abandon the Promethean you'd been in the middle of creating, what choice is there? Steal a truck and finish the job while your buddies drive. And that's how the Hitchhiker came to be - when an Ulgan tried this and found zir creation didn't spark when they hit a rest area. Zie begged the Principle for mercy...and the body began to thrash about on the seat, its eyes opening full of hate and hunger. The monster smashed its way out the window, its limbs bent at wrong angles as it rushed out into the night. The throng abandoned it, and the Ulgan has never forgiven them for it.

In Dormant form, the Hitchhiker resembles a sort of misshapen statue of a dog - the kind of thing you see at rest areas for kids to take pictures with. Its legs are uneven, its head vaguely shaped but pointy, and it's usually in a sort of unsteady crouch, though it doesn't use the same pose each time it relocates. Most travelers either don't see it often enough to notice the shifting postures or have seen enough weird poo poo that they don't want to know why. Its name comes from its tendencies when active and pursuing prey or finding new hunting grounds. It will find a vehicle, usually a trailer or car carrier, and find a spot to latch on. It rides from truck stop rest area to highway welcome center and so on. It remains in place long enough to attack a Promethean or two, then moves on.

When active, it unfolds into a humanoid shape, vaguely werewolfy, though it'd never fool anyone that'd seen a true werewolf. Its 'stone' body softens into chitin, with spiny hairs. It can move as easily on two legs as four. It prefers to separate its targets from their groups and attack quickly. It's fairly cowardly, avoiding attack of targets large or powerful enough to threaten it, and even its ravenous hunger for Pyros won't convince it to push its luck often. When it attacks, it aims to grapple and pin its prey, strike and tear out some food, then move on before anyone goes looking for its victim.

The Hitchhiker is clever enough that some suspect it of being a sublimatus, and it's essentially right on the verge of becoming one. It is extremely cunning and adaptable, can use human tools - but it's not a person and doesn't really think beyond the short term. It isn't especially shy about going dormant in the open. It's only a matter of time before humans notice a strange, vanishing dog statue that accompanies animal attacks on poor people (who are, in truth, Prometheans). An urban legend is sure to spring up soon, if it hasn't already. Its genitor is still trying to track it down out of misplaced love for zir creation. Zie hopes that zie can feed the Hitchhiker Vitriol enough to allow it to sprout a mind - but making it a sublimatus is unlikely to be good for anyone.

The Hitchhiker is not intelligent but is insanely cunning, strong-willed and fast. It's also stronger and tougher than any normal human, an excellent fighter and good at climbing around, sneaking and hiding. It knows how to navigate highways surprisingly well, too. If it were to become a sublimatus, it'd be terrifyingly dangerous rather than just a particularly nasty monster.


E pluribus unum.

Hive is one Pandoran, but not always one body. Hive can only tell the difference because they hurt more when they are many - their stomachs churn with need. They sleep when they must, waking from Dormancy to hunt prey as any Pandoran. Insofar as they are capable of love, they love their mother. Their mother lets them feed on prey she brings to the lair, praising Hive when their bodies fight over the scraps. Hive attempts not to disappoint her. They have, once, when they first awoke and she saw what they were. When she abandoned them hours later, they were alone - only one body, small and weak and starving. They barely survived until their mother returned. Their mother experiments on them, and Hive craves her attention but fears her touch. The experiments are painful, causing Hive to swell and then burst into two new bodies, or four, or eight. The mother attempts to make Hive differently, with new limbs and teeth and eyes. It never really works. When Hive is few, their mother does not permit them to hunt, keeping them on the edge of frenzy and Dormancy before feeding them. Sometimes they are made to eat themselves rather than Prometheans.

Once Hive consumes as much of themselves as is possible, they enter Dormancy and awaken again as something new and different, something Not-Hive. Hive hates Not-Hive, because their mother does not play with Hive while Not-Hive is there. Hive changes and hungers by nature. They know they are not what their mother intended, but believe they are the child their mother deserves. Hive does not understand why their mother hurts them, increases them and lessesn them and feeds them as she does. The more Hive consumes and multiplies, the closer they feel they are to understanding their mother's plan.

When dormant, Hive looks like a mass if discarded, tangled wraps of fabric around some sticks. In action, each body is barely humanoid, scuttling about on all fours and wrapped in tangled hair and fur. They have crazed eyes, sharp fangs and curling, ram-like horns. They are forced to divide themselves frequently, and their bodies are typically wounded and bloody. By accident or design, Hive's divisions always result in a Pandoran that, once it awakens, also becomes Hive and shares Hive's communal hungers. Hive is a perfect pack hunter, able to use complex flanking and herding techniques in its hunting. Each body increases its chances fo success, but not without cost - Hive is one mind but many stomachs, and each body increases their hunger.

Hive's unique physiology and psychic nature make them practically immortal - as long as any of Hive survives, Hive remains. Its resilience is tied to the ability to link all bodies in perfect psychic communion. They prefer the comfort of many bodies, but can easily contain themselves in one. A single body is vulnerable, however, and so Hive could be defeated by wearing it down and taking it out body by body until all were defeated. Still, many that've tangled with Hive believe it to be impossible to kill. Many assume Hive as a sublimatus would be the ultimate threat, given its multi-bodied nature. However, in truth, it would be impossible. The mutations involved in becoming sublimatus would destroy Hive's unique ability to share senses with its bodies, and a sublimatus Hive would be a singular being. It also does not have infinite control range. If Hive's bodies draw too far apart, they are instinctively shed from the group, starting with the most distant. Shed bodies awaken in permanent frenzy, attacking anything nearby. If not dealt with quickly, they can spread out and become an even greater threat.

While Hive is not smart, it is fast and cunning. Each body is faster, stronger and tougher than any human or normal Promethean, and each is amazingly good at combat. Even landing a hit on them is very difficult, and each body comes with its own healthbar, though I believe they share a Willpower pool, which means they can be worn down over time as a group. Even so, I would not want to have to fight Hive - it's a pretty terrifyingly strong Pandoran for a non-sublimatus.

Next time: The Druid, the Skin Dancer, the Bloody Saint

Lord_Hambrose
Nov 21, 2008

*a foul hooting fills the air*




I really like them. Having a counterpoint to Centimanus guys for ways the Pilgrimage can go wrong definitely adds something worthwhile. And while they are not going to be a thing you encounter a lot, they also explicitly produce your main foes all the time.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

Now prepare yourselves! You're the guests of honor at the Greatest Kung Fu Cannibal BBQ Ever!



Pieces of Peace posted:

It makes sense that inhuman constructs made from corpses, striving to become fully human, wouldn't want to narrow the definition of who's human and deserves empathy… that way lies just a little bit of backstabbing and self-destruction.

On the other hand, backstabbing and self-destruction are supremely human. :eng101:

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

To witness titanic events is always dangerous, usually painful, and often fatal.





Ratoslov posted:

On the other hand, backstabbing and self-destruction are supremely human. :eng101:
I think one of the points of Promethean is taking a break from pop misanthropy.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


Ratoslov posted:

On the other hand, backstabbing and self-destruction are supremely human. :eng101:

Alternately if being humane is required to be human, that means it's okay to kill bad people because they're not really people, just some sort of highly aggressive animal that can use a gun. Seems like pretty much a perfect PC philosophy to me. :v:

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I think that one of the interesting points of Promethean is that it recognizes that being a bad person is still being a person, but that there are limits to that and that ultimately in order to imagine oneself as human, one has to imagine others as human too. Prometheans who do violence the way humans do violence are going to be pretty different from Centimani.

Which means that there's a temptation for Prometheans to declare 'humans kill each other all the time, so killing you for Vitriol is part of my Pilgrimage' and they're not totally wrong - but they're also not really doing it right.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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


Violence in general is going to have a really weird place in a Promethean story because it would be more about contextualizing violence, from the point of view of something of an outsider looking in and trying to understand it. It's probably going to come up, partly because it's an important part of the human character but also partly because the WoD is explicitly a more violent world than the real one. The ubiquity of actual lethal violence and the way it would warp peoples' culture and worldview somewhat beyond just 'nobody really pays as much attention to people going missing at the colossal pillar of wasp eggs' to justify normal urban fantasy adventures would actually be worth examining in Promethean.

Razakai
Sep 15, 2007

People are afraid
To merge on the freeway
Disappear here


SPHERES OF MIGHT: Part 4





It's pretty clear why people were looking forward to this one. Brute is about being big and shoving people around. While it's marked as an unarmed sphere, anyone can use it, and as we'll soon see pretty much anyone who melees will want to.
Your basic talent is Shove - as a move action you can move up to 1/2 speed, make a melee touch attack (so ignoring armor) to deal Str mod damage (or Dex mod if you have weapon finesse) as well as Battering the target for 1 turn. This is nuts. Damage and a debuff while still allowing you to move around and take an attack action? With speed boosts from Athletics etc even 1/2 speed is a good distance, and there's a ton of support for Shove. It also mentions Manhandle talents which are effects that apply a single one of when you Bull Rush, Drag, Overrun and Reposition maneuver - it does note you can't use them if you use the maneuver as a free action though, to prevent infinite chains.

General talents are numerous and great. This is going to be a lengthy one as almost every talent is worth covering.
We start off strong with Brace Weapon - this lets you use a shield or 2h weapon for overrun (a combat maneuver that lets you move through a target's space and knock them over), letting you add enhancement bonuses to your check. The real benefit is that this lets you do the same with Shove - not only adding your +hit bonus, but adding +damage bonus as well as stuff like flaming weapons. So already Shove is basically on par with a weapon strike.
Break Defenses causes creatures you use a Bull Rush, Drag, Overrun and Reposition maneuver on to provoke AoO from allies - in a melee heavy group this can get pretty crazy, as you just shove a sucker straight into your buddy's swords.
Dominoes makes it so if you bull rush, drag or reposition a creature into another creature, you can trip the second creature as a free action. Battlefield control via physical might!
Earthquake Stomp is a bit like our old friend Shatter Earth - as a full round action (or standard via expend focus) you trip all nearby enemies, with a scaling radius. Gets very nice with some trip-related talents we'll get to later, but the radius is sadly a bit small.
Focused Might makes Shove restore focus when it hits. No fuss focus restoration while you carry on racking up the damage makes this the premier focus recovery options for a lot of builds.
Follow Through lets you make a free bull rush or reposition when you attack a target - while you can't Manhandle with this, it's a free move you can combine with stuff like Dominoes to cause absolute chaos.
Greater Shove lets you add 1/2 your BAB to Shove's damage, and add stuff like Power Attack to it. SHOVES FOR THE SHOVE THRONE
Hammer causes stuff to take damage if you'd rush/drag/reposition them into a wall or other creature - including from slamming them into the floor.
Hostile Movement lets you move creatures in other directions as you bull rush them, making it a lot easier to smash them into walls and their friends. It also explicitly lets you rush them vertically into the air!
Muscular Surge lets you take a move action to hulk out for a bit, giving a substantial boost to jumping, strength checks and carrying for a few turns, but fatiguing you afterwards. Has some utility, but the real use is a legendary talent we'll see in a bit.
Quick Force lets you rush/drag/reposition as a move action rather than standard. This sadly means less shoving, but this is pretty vital as you can rush a target twice in a turn combined with Follow Through.
You cleary aren't, so onto SMASH. This causes those maneuvers to also deal damage equal to your unarmed damage or a light weapon you're wielding, and adding their weapon bonuses to those maneuvers. This is actually kinda disappointing as it doesn't work with 2h weapons unlike the rest of the sphere.
Finally we have the combo of Stampede and Unstoppable. Stampede lets you charge stuff without provoking AoOs, and Unstoppable combines to make your charge smash through objects, difficult terrain, and people so you can Kool Aid Man through a wall and then straight through whatever unlucky bastard was behind that wall.

Manhandle talents are all pretty staightforward. You can stagger, trip, entangle, grapple, steal or disarm as part of the affected maneuvers, or follow it up with a second rush in order to push a guy straight into next week. Throw requires expending focus, but finally lets you actually pick up and throw a guy so points for style.

Legendary talents help with the aforementioned Muscular Surge. Giant makes it's effect permanent, and you can now activate it to increase it's power and make you count as 1 size larger for the purpose of combat maneuvers. Titan is even better, permanently making you count as 1 size larger, and letting you activate it to become 2 sizes larger. If you want to pick up a dragon and use it to hit another dragon, these are your talents!
Terrain Trasher lets you tear chunks of the scenery out and throw them at people. Not terribly useful, but fun.
Thunderous Clap is what the Shatter/Shrapnel combo should have been. It takes a full round action+expend focus, but you create an AoE with a pretty substantial area that deals decent damage in a cone or burst around you. This also bull rushes targets - this is a free action so no manhandling, but it can cause absolute chaos vs large groups. You can even choose to project it in a long range cone to avoid friendly fire - it's long range enough that you can potentially smack flyers straight out of the sky.

As you can tell from my tone, Brute is a fantastic sphere. A brief dip gives you one of the best move action martial abilities around, and diving will turn Bull Rush into a lethal attack that thanks to Titan, can be used on just about everything. This might have some problems late game when absolutely everything can fly, but I'm pretty sure landing a Bull Rush>Manhandle Entangle will knock things out of the air so combine with Eagle's Path for premier anti-aircraft defense.





Two Weapon Fighting is infamously full of issues and loops you have to jump through in D&D/Pathfinder. Generally you need multiple high stats, lengthy feat chains and you're absolutely neutered if you're unable to stand there and full attack something. The Dual Wielding sphere probably doesn't quite match the damage of TWF being able to sink half a dozen hits into someone via a full attack round, but it does greatly compensate with utility and less investment required.
When you learn the sphere, you get the imaginatively named Dual Attack talent. This lets you make a free offhand attack whenever you make an attack action with a mainhand. There's a few standard restrictions like being limited to light/one handed weapons, taking a -2 to attack rolls (and -4 if your offhand isn't light), and reducing the damage you get from Strength, but it's basically the Two Weapon Fighting feat without the stat requirement.

Dual Wielding doesn't have the standard 'add one of these to your attack', instead having a long list of general dual weapon talents. Unfortunately they're not terribly interesting, despite being mechanically effective, so I'll keep it brief.
Mercurial Flow, which doubles the Strength bonus of your offhand, which is a pretty huge damage boost.
Following Strike lets your offhand attack cleave to an adjacent enemy at no cost, which is pretty substantial.
Impossible Reload solves the 'dual hand crossbow fighter' argument by letting you reload without needing a free hand, for all your swashbuckler/medieval riot cop needs.
Tandem Offensive is interesting - whenever you hit with your mainhand weapon, your offhand weapon gains it's enhancement bonus and material. So you only need a single magical weapon, solving the painful gold cost of keeping two weapons up to date. However, it only works if you hit, and doesn't inherit any special effects, only your standard +X - so it's not ideal.
There's a plethora of small but effective talents that reduce accuracy penalties, apply debuffs, and let you expend focus to reroll misses or get a substantial boost to damage.

Legendary talents include Cyclone Cut, which lets you create a cutting whirlwind around you, dealing damage in a pretty good AoE. The damage itself is a bit vague though - it refers to "weapon damage" but doesn't say whether this actually gets a bonus from Strength or the like. If not, it's a pretty underwhelming attack. If so, it's a great way of cutting down swarms of weaker stuff.
Three-Sword Style is an amusing talent that lets you tri-wield via holding a sword in your mouth. Despite being a bit silly, it's a lot of extra damage!
Triangle Slash is the upgrade to Three-Sword Style, allowing you to expend focus to make an attack action with each weapon. This means each of your 3 hits gains full benefits from spheres, feats like Vital Strike and so on - this is a fairly obscene amount of damage and means mouthswords are by far the best dual wield build.

Dual Wielding isn't a particularly exciting or flashy sphere, but it's hard to argue with it mechanically. You can have a viable dual wielder pretty much from level 1 just by grabbing the essential talents, which isn't something PF has ever really pulled off. You'll never quite match the raw damage of a hasted TWF fighter, but you'll definitely have enough tricks to compete.




Fortunately, Duelist is quite a flashy sphere unlike our last entry. This has quite a few focuses - bleed damage, disarming, quickdraw, and a few nice utility talents. Despite the name, it can support quite a few character types thanks to being weapon agnostic - although the clear focus is either on your classic rapier wielding duelist, or the iaijutsu samurai.
On learning the sphere, your base ability is Blooded Strike. This lets your attack actions, disarms and AoOs inflict a small amount of bleed damage, which stacks with other bleed damage unlike usual. You also never provoke AoOs from combat maneuvers vs bleeding targets, giving you a pseudo-Battered with perfect uptime. The bleed damage is very low, but as we'll see shortly it has a lot of support.

Bleed talents, as their name suggests, trigger whenever you cause a target to bleed.
Hurricane Strike is a fun, flashy move that lets you make an additional attack against all enemies within your reach - albeit at a damage and accuracy penalty, although the damage penalty does get removed at higher levels. This is pretty powerful as it doesn't say you can't double attack the same enemy that triggered it! Unfortunately you can only use it when drawing your weapon, so you'll need to find a way to easily re-sheathe it, or be stuck with it as an opener. Still, excellent talent and a cool visual.
Leg Cutter is an interesting one, as it lets you take a small attack penalty to force a target to make a saving throw or fall prone. This totally bypasses the whole Trip combat maneuver and associated system, so you can knock things down that nobody else usually could without magic. Has some great synergies we'll see later too.
Open Vein is your focus expender, and applies a much more powerful bleed. Combine with Perforating Wounds which causes you to deal additional damage equal to the bleed, or Debilitating Injuries which causes them to take an attack roll penalty equal to their bleed, and you can pull off some nasty debuffs. Note you're limited to one bleed talent used at a time though, so no stacking all this in 1 hit.

Disarm talents continue the 'incredibly obvious naming' theme by applying when you disarm something.
Swift Slice is the obvious choice - this lets you make a swift action melee attack when you disarm, or as an AoO if they're bleeding. The AoO version is generally superior as you can have multiple AoOs per turn, but only the one swift, and most SoM talents work off AoOs.
Whirlwind Draw can be pretty good when combined with Hurricane Strike, as it lets you sheathe your weapon as a free action whenever you disarm. Seeing as disarms inflict bleed, you can Disarm>Hurricane Strike>Whirlwind Draw>repeat each turn, to inflict consistent AoE damage and keep a target weaponless. With some later spheres you'll see even better ways of doing this.
Traitorous Blade is interesting due to the vague wording. When you disarm, if you have a free hand you can catch their weapon and stab em with it as a swift action. So far, so good. At BAB+10 though, 'you may instead make the granted attack as a free action that can be taken once per round, even if it’s not your turn'. There's nothing to say this ever expires - so can you disarm someone and forever have a magical freestabbing knife, as long as you never let it go? I'm guessing it's supposed to just be upgrading it from a swift to free action, but it's odd.

General talents have quite a few required pickups for any aspiring duelist.
One flaw with bleed is that any magical healing removes it. Not so with Long Cuts, which makes it require a noticeable amount of healing to close your bleeds.
Ooze Ichor takes care of the other common issue of bleed immune enemies by allowing you to bypass immunities, albeit at reduced damage. Bleed those skeletons!
The above talents took care of bleed immune enemies, but what to do when your disarming duelist fights a bunch of things that don't have weapons? Bind Weapon lets you instead choose to bind your weapon to a target's, preventing them from moving until they successfully break that bind. This even works vs stuff with natural weapons, and counts as a disarm - so you're never unable to trigger your talents.
...And Stay Down! gives you a free AoO that deals bonus bleed damage whenever an enemy falls prone within your reach. This obviously works very well with Leg Cutter and just about any other way of knocking people down. To add insult to injury, if they bleed from this attack that have to make an Acrobatics check to get up due to slipperiness. This means that if you do manage to bleed+prone a big burly fighter in plate that hasn't bothered with that skill, he's probably staying there until he's dead. Nice.
Defensive Slice is a fantastic defensive talent - whenever a ranged attack is made against you, you can make an AoO against the projectile to swat it out of the air. If you have good accuracy and enough AoOs, this can really neuter archers.

Legendary talents start off with the amusing Dervish Launch - this lets you twirl a disarmed weapon around and flick it at an enemy nearby as a ranged attack, regardless of the size. Feel free to disarm a giant's enormous fuckoff maul and launch it 30ft into his buddy's face.
Bleed Air offers our first martial save or die. When you bleed a targe that's already bleeding, you puncture their lungs, causing them to suffocate in 1d4 rounds unless they save. Suffocation immediately renders you unconcious, then dead. Takes a bit of RNG and doesn't work vs things that don't breathe, but nasty.
Jugular Cut is the upgrade - anything you make bleed will drop dead in 3 turns unless they save. And they have to keep on saving as long as they're bleeding. Most things are probably dead within 3 turns at the level you can get this, but pretty fun nonetheless.
Sever continues our Save or Die/Suck theme. If you disarm a target and roll inside your weapon's base critical range (so a 15% chance for the average rapier), the target has to make a save or lose their hand. As you can imagine this inflicts a ton of bleed damage and a long list of obvious penalties such as being unable to two-hand weapons, chance to fail spellcasting and so on. While the chance is fairly low, if this lands they're probably finished.
Vacuum Cut is another great addition to our Being An Anime build. This lets you expend focus to project a cutting wave of force, letting you strike a target with your melee weapon at range. However, the damage is slightly reduced until you get to higher levels. Combined with the focus cost, the requirement to draw a sheathed weapon, and the fact it's reasonably short range, it's not that great - but it is cool.
Vacuum Slice on the other hand is definitely worthwhile. This requires a full round action, presumably to dramatically unsheathe your hanzo steel, and instead creates a conal projection. Pretty substantial AoE, but unfortunately does not apply any debuffs or effects, so no stacking up bleeds and the like. Still, points for cool.

Duelist is definitely one of my favourite spheres, and not just because I'm a katana loving weeb at heart. It has a bunch of strong mechanical effects, interesting synergies both with itself and other spheres (including one in the next post), and some really flashy moves. Anyone that wants a more precise melee build can't go wrong here.

Next up: Equipment (and a bit about traditions), Fencing and Gladiator

ChaseSP
Mar 25, 2013



I thought there was an ability that outright let you bury your opponent under brute, or was I thinking about another group?

E: Okay nope its under wrestling which is another hilarious sphere I can't wait to see you elaborate on.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018



Night Horrors: The Tormented
Part 9: HELL TREE


Treeclops is here to kill you.

Myrax dates back to an unfortunate set of deaths in Colorado, at Camp Ravenwood. Years ago, a group of boy scouts on a two-day wilderness trip got killed by mountain lions - officially, that is. The locals went hunting the next year when the mayor cut back on local laws preventing hunting mountain lions, but the deaths continued even after the purge ended. They stopped randomly and without warning. Camp Ravenwood closed due to bad press. Years later, the local kids have figured out roughly what happened based on accounts from the surviving boy scouts. They say it was no mountain lion that attacked, but Myrax, the Druid of Camp Ravenwood. The local teens have developed his legend to include a tragic backstory and an ethos of woodland protection against civilization. There's even a webcomic about Myrax.

The real Myrax, of course, is far simpler than the folklore. It's just a Pandoran with a need to hunt and eat Pyros. Due to its hunting grounds, it is forced into Dormancy for long periods, but while active it attacks anything that moves - mortal or Promethean. It kills mortals for fun, Prometheans for food. It does seem to prefer a subtler hunt, though, and despite the legends it has never been caught on film. It appears, while dormant, to be a tree trunk with sharp features and strange marks, as if someoned tried to carve it. When active, the marks open to reveal dark eyes and sharp fangs in a massive maw. Its limbs are long and fast, with sharp bark nails that drip viscous and poisonous sap. Myrax enjoys playing with its prey, and it makes excited noises that sound like human laughter. It always attacks the slowest in a group first.

Myrax is relatively weak for a Pandoran, but its cunning and savagery are dangerous, and most Prometheans don't expect to run into forest Pandorans. It prefers to strike from ambush, poison strong foes, then flee into the woods to wait. It bides its time and waits for the prey to weaken before striking again. When it has neither humans nor Prometheans to hunt, it attacks local animals and drives their populations to dangerous lows. Many blame this ecological disaster on the mayor's lax stance on hunting laws, but experts say that alone cannot account for the massive decline in local animal species. The Pandoran also has especially cruel habits against woodcutters and others that harm its forest territory. It loves to collect trophies from them - particularly teeth, which it puts into its own mouth.

Myrax is cunning and strong, but its speed is only slightly above human. It's shockingly dodgy and it's very good at fighting, but it relies on its hit-and-fade maneuvers to win in most fights and doesn't like a stand-up battle. It also doesn't have particularly strong armor for a Pandoran, though it has a sizable healthbar and excellent defense.


Made from 100% werewolf parts. ...really.

So, once upon a time, an Ulgan made a deal with a pack of werewolves, receiving the body of one of their recently killed packmates. The Ulgan believed she could use the spiritually attuned body to raise a worthy Ulgan child. Under the full moon, she bathed the body in unspoiled river waters and burned autumn leaves as an offering to the spirits. She coated the body in her ectoplasm and watched it fade into Twilight. However, the spirits vomited it back into the world, an abomination of skittering limbs. Even her expertise could not keep the creature from becoming a Pandoran, howling and unwanted. This is Nuharul, legendary for slaying its own genitor and making her skin its first outfit. The legend of Nuharul has grown over the years due to its unrelenting hunt, its viciousness and its odd behavior and relationship with the spirit world. It eats werewolf flesh almost as readily as Promethean and it wears the skins of its fallen prey. Once it tastes blood, Essence or Vitriol, it will not stop until it kills its target, is destroyed or is forced into Dormancy.

Nuharul vaguely resembles its wolf 'ancestors' in a parodic way. It runs on four legs, changing in size and muscle mass freely when it wants to jump, attack or run faster. It is a bloated mass of ever-changing flesh that never seems able to form a definitive body - possibly by choice, possibly an aftereffect of its heritage. When it is ready to kill, this tends to work to its advantage - prey find it hard to strike the agile, shifting beast that is always changing its form to better cripple its prey. It hunts by the full moon, but that is not the only behavior the moon drives it to. When the moon is thin in the sky, the Pandoran weeps and howls in anguish. Mortals hear something high and terrifying, but Prometheans and werewolves can recognize the sound as mournful and sad.

Nuharul is driven to hunt werewolves and eat them, the same as Prometheans. This appears to be an inherent need to its dead flesh, and so werewolves despise it as much as the Created do. It also has a habit of nesting near Loci. It doesn't understand why, but were it to ever find a way into Shadow, it would go berserk and attack every spirit it came across, much like a werewolf in the death rage. However, there is one thing that drives Nuharul more than eating the flesh of werewolf or Promethean: challenge. When it senses the Azoth of a particularly powerful Promethean, it abandons all other pursuits. It hunts not only for Pyros alone, but to fulfill its instinctive urge to down strong prey and divide itself. It longs to create a 'pack' of its own by bathing in the Azoth of a potent foe and wielding it to create more of its kind.

Nuharul looks ridiculous but it is actually exceptionally strong and tough. While it's only as fast as the fastest human alive, it is over twice as a strong as any human could be, and twice as tough as well. It has inhuman skill at athletics and combat, too. Its great weaknesses are poor Willpower for a Pandoran and its general low intellect. On the other hand, it can dodge bullets, is extremely hard to hit in general, and has a huge healthbar. I don't think I've ever seen a non-spirit with stats quite this high before, actually. Strength 12 and Brawl 6, really?


Not the Pyros Devil.

The church where Samael lives wasn't popular to begin with. Father Maxwell Dylon did his best, kept the place clean and took care of it in the hopes that he'd inspire others to act without sin. One night, a woman came to him for shelter, and he couldn't turn her away. She had issues he didn't understand, she feared fire and crowds, and at first she unsettled him and made him wary. The old man even got angry, sometimes unreasonably so, but faith helped him cope with the Disquiet, and he eventually befriended the woman. They talked about God, pilgrimages, souls and TV until Father Dylon convinced his friend to take the next step. That week, there was no Sunday sermon, and the week after, the locals began to disappear. Given the local crime rate, they were blamed on gang violence. Candles were lit, memorials held, and the church withered away and closed. Inside lies the dormant Pandoran that the woman named Samael. It takes the form of a gargoyle, waiting for a Promethean to arrive that it might awaken and feed itself again.

Samael is a monster of stone skin and wood bones, much like the church itself. It looks like a demon, moving about on all fours and with anguished eyes. It has a tail, horns and sharp talons on all its limbs. It is silent as it moves, easily walking on walls and efficiently, coldly stalking its prey. When it attacks, it is a storm of claws and tail, holding nothing back until it subdues the trespasser, mortal or Promethean. It never wastes violence, and often it aims to tear off body parts that can hold weapons, such as hands, or tears open necks to let the victims bleed out. It attempts to keep Promethean prey alive so it can eat them before their deaths, consuming Pyros mid-fight.

Some believe the ghost of Father Dylon haunts the church, but few have bothered to investigate. The old church is abandoned, the area is rather violent and many who go inside fall prey to Samael. When it is forced to flee its lair, it attempts to take refuge in similar churches. It will find a place to nest and, if required, go dormant safely. It will cull any trespassers to its new claim. It tends to settle in churches near sources of Pyros, which means the presence of a bunch of Prometheans can jeopardize local mortals because it will be drawn to them. It should be noted, Samael's birth isn't unique, either. Across the US, religious temples of all sorts are visited by a strange wanderer who approaches the local clergy and talks to them over the course of several nights before creating a Pandoran that physically resembles a saint or demon of the religion.

Samael is weak for a Pandoran. It's not very smart or cunning, relying primarily on brute force, and by Pandoran standards it's neither fast nor super tough. It's got low Willpower, too. It is a good fighter and good at stealth, but its dicepools are nowhere near as high as other Pandorans for most things except strength-related stuff. Its defenses are fairly low, too. This is the kind of critter a starting group of Prometheans could reasonably take on with relative ease. It does have natural armor and camouflage that help it, but it's nowhere near, say, Nuharul's level.

Next time: The Twisted Landscape, the Abandoned Library, the Local Campus Legend

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Mors Rattus posted:

I don't think I've ever seen a non-spirit with stats quite this high before, actually. Strength 12 and Brawl 6, really?

I get the impression this thing is more meant for werewolves to fight, in a subtle crossover.

Hostile V
May 30, 2013

Solving all of life's problems through enhanced casting of Occam's Razor. Reward yourself with an imaginary chalice.



On paper I understand that Prometheans can literally eat anything because their metabolism is powered by Azoth and Azoth can burn anything. And this is incredibly helpful for their nomadic lifestyle. If you're down and out in an urban environment, dumpster dive. If you want a drink in nature, just sip whatever scummy pond water, it's 100% safe. Old roadkill, raw corn, uncooked bones, unknown berries, whatever. A Promethean can eat it if they need to, but they often don't necessarily need to. It helps with playing roles to actually cook dinners or reheat leftovers or subsist on noodles and energy drinks. You're doing what humans do to get by, it gets you that much closer.

Which is what makes it such a good reminder that the Petrificati are wrong and Prometheans can eat anything to have what they subsist on listed. Because they say "Petrificati just feed themselves, do their role and stare into space" and you're like "oh okay that doesn't sound too bad." "One of them just eats kudzu by the pound by grabbing leaves and vines off the wall and the other shovels handfuls of rancid dumpster grease into his mouth if he can't pull food out of an active fryer when nobody is looking." " :stonk: "

The Lone Badger
Sep 24, 2007



Both of those are organics that could feed something, even if not a human. Could a promethean eat gravel?

Hostile V
May 30, 2013

Solving all of life's problems through enhanced casting of Occam's Razor. Reward yourself with an imaginary chalice.



The Lone Badger posted:

Both of those are organics that could feed something, even if not a human. Could a promethean eat gravel?
Normal Prometheans can get sustenance from any organic material regardless of how rotten or disgusting or foul it is. If you get the Acid Stomach merit then you can eat anything as long as you can swallow it. Hair, industrial screws, gravel, spare change, triple A-batteries, airpods...

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lofi
Apr 2, 2018






And yet still not macdonalds.

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