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Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

In reference to my recent comments, I should mention that I just noticed the appearance of Against the Dark: The Transylvanian Tribunal on e23.

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Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Bieeardo posted:

In all seriousness, I wouldn't be surprised if the thought processes that led to the creation of Banality as a character stat, and all of the thematic fallout from that came from someone having an epiphany while watching a stage production of Peter Pan. Like, what if nobody clapped and shouted that they believed in fairies, and Tinkerbell died, man?

I mostly got the impression that the original World of Darkness was basically written by people just out of college, and that the don't-trust-anybody-over-thirty was all more or less sincere.

Then they all turned thirty, and then forty, and that's how the nWoD was born.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Modrons have always struck me as a good example of how D&D's take on law versus chaos is messed up. Modrons are effectively chaotic outsiders—they do random things for inexplicable reasons and refuse to explain themselves or behave like good neighbors. The only major difference between them and slaad, alignment-wise, is that modrons have a clockwork theme and insist that there's a logic to what they do.

The difference between "according to an order nobody can understand" and "random" isn't much.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Although the plot-important NPCs are all much older than that and the art rarely portrays Kithain society as all kids.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Bieeardo posted:

Even more frustrating, a lot of that conflict and resentment went *poof* with the second edition printing. Everyone was suddenly happy living in a Barbie dream-castle world, 'explained' by a short essay that claimed people and changelings harkened back to the 'good old days'... which was kind of bullshit, given indications from Vampire: the Dark Ages that the medieval WoD was even less pleasant than the modern one. The somewhat interesting seelie/unseelie dichotomy got clamped down to a deeply frustrating traditionalist-good/modernist-bad arrangement. There wasn't a whole lot of depth even before that, and as someone involved in the SCA (which got name-dropped multiple times in the books, and had endless, smug associations drawn between by people involved with both) it was downright embarrassing. The World of Darkness definitely wasn't the place for the Middle Ages (as They Should Have Been), even if you could 'freak the mundanes' by waving rattan 'swords' around in both.

Changeling was actually fond of modernism insofar as democracy was involved—sidhe trying to be rulers were almost always jerks, except when they weren't. It's not hugely consistent, since the game seemed to be generically in favor of kings and dukes and medieval pageantry as a general thing, but didn't fail to mention that people who think of themselves as having a divine right to rule their lessers tend to be tremendous assholes.

There are like three good games that were sewed together to make the horrifying Frankenstein that was Changeling: the Dreaming, and none of them are happy to be sharing space with each other.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I forget, did Dreaming ever try to address the problem inherent in childling satyrs or did it just ignore that it had an X-splat based on being prepubescent and a Y-splat based on having lots of sex, and that these two had an uncomfortable intersection?

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Kurieg posted:

Onyx Path seems to be a bit more on the ball with this, making sure they get artists they trust not to dick them over, and not putting out PoD versions of books until the first 'Fan Pass' of editing goes through, just in case there are a few "See Page XX"s or edge cases of plagiarism.

Yeah, you really need a line-editor/developer for broader issues, but when it comes to spotting typos and inconsistencies, no editor alive can match the power of All Your Readers Combined.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Zereth posted:

I thought three or four were confirmed, which tainted everything the artist did so they had to hire new people?

We were never sure exactly how many, but the revelation of the first few gave Jenna some unpleasant insights into why the artist in question had seemed difficult to direct (besides just the language barrier).

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

pkfan2004 posted:

So do the Changelings ever offer an alternative to going to school (not counting home school) or is the book just like "primary school sucks, middle school sucks, high school sucks 90% of the time, at least you can buy weed and go on road trips in college, it's all loving terrible and killing you but you have no choice so suck it up"? Because if that's the case wow that's one of the most whiny cases of "I don't like things but I don't know/care enough to change them so whatever" I've seen in a while.

It really kind of doesn't.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I'd be interested to hear some of the people reading Unhallowed Metropolis comment on Jenna's Projects: A Manual of Ambition, which was a long-term projects system she wrote for UM that was ultimately left unpublished and released for free.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/knkqqpc1egq6a7k/Projects%20%28A%20Manual%20of%20Ambition%29.pdf

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

A story about the Order of Hermes would be interesting, although I think that with the Order as it stands in 1220 it would be absolutely doomed. The Order has been gradually evolving away from its current fragmentary form for a while, but it still has a fairly large number of members who want to do whatever they want to and set anybody who disagrees on fire. Like, the number of Tytalus magi who would consent to this plan is basically zero.

(Not that anybody would miss them if House Tytalus was set on fire.)

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Mors Rattus posted:

The scenario examines all that; House Tytalus actually isn't the primary opponent of the plan. House Bonisagus is.

Interesting! I'll have to read this book when it comes out in PDF in like 2016.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I have to say, I will never stop being in love with the story of the villainous Hutt who subcontracts his superweapon to the lowest bidder and creates the crappiest doomsday device in galactic history.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Meanwhile, layout just sent back the first 134 pages of the new Nobilis 2e PDF yesterday.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

theironjef posted:

We talked about that a lot, that the players are gonna basically be like the Duke of Penis, the Earl of Schadenfreude, and the Baron of Tacos. It sounds like it'd be terrible, but what would actually happen is that you'd rarely use the noun associated with your Domain, you'd just use the emotions it instills. So like if you were the Baron of Tacos, you'd spend all your time causing people to experience the contentment and indolence that follows a meal of tacos, or bringing about such a great lust for tacos that your opponents cannot continue their fight and must run for the border.

In the third edition Domain got split into Domain and Persona, with Persona working more or less the way you describe—it manipulates taconess rather than tacos themselves.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

theironjef posted:

Oh good. Glad to hear it. One of the things I totally hated and didn't think was actually awesome about 2nd edition was that magic junk was mostly just conceptual, and you could basically call up a magic dealy by describing it. Glad they took that part out. I hope one of the things they put in was an explanation of that Treachery guy's claw. I wanted to figure out how he built that as a gift so bad. It had to be expensive as gently caress, because he used it for some ludicrous shenanigans (cutting the ocean in twain in particular).

It's listed in the 2e Example of Play somewhere: it's a level 7 Aspect Gift that he can use as a simple miracle. Characters with huge defining Gifts are fun!

Treasure is basically centered around your mystic panoply and the objects and people that are symbols of you. Some people find it a bit confusing because it has a weird progression, but I find it allows for a lot of fun.

(Nobilis 3e provides some of the distinction between attributes based on what parts of your intention they give miraculous force to. Aspect gives force to "I do this perfectly" but not to "and this is the result," so that "I run at light speed" doesn't necessarily mean you get to add "and win the race" except insofar as winning races is the probably result of running at the speed of light. Domain and Persona let you do more to state the result of your miracle—"I fill him with rage to make him attack me"—but are limited to singular, fairly simple actions. Treasure kind of splits the difference and lets you pronounce miracles that give you a bit more fine control over what's going on.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Arashiofordo3 posted:

Having now listened to your Nobilis episode. (Thanks for harping on about the podcast, I'd forgotten about it. :)) I kinda wanna play it, I almost ended up getting a second hand copy when I was working in a charity shop a few years back, but the pages upon pages of flowery language put me off. Would anyone actually recommend playing it? I sounds easy to break and without much push for the players beyond 'dick over people for points'

I play it all the time and have loads of fun.

I honestly don't find it very "breakable" because players being able to do ridiculous things is kind of a ground assumption. If somebody cracks the Earth you just build a new one, ya know; or accustom yourself to taking your tea on the moon.

Anyway, the Nobilis 2e PDF should be out in a couple of weeks, and the 3e PDF (less lovely, but more mechanically robust) is on DTRPG now.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

PresidentBeard posted:

Really? It seemed to have a similar murderhobo and random magic killing you for no reason. Unless I'm misremembering how the Dying Earth stories actually ran. It's been a long time since I read any of them. So if I'm completely misrepresenting them my bad.

It could run Liane, but not Cugel.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."



Chuubo's Marvelous Wish-Granting Engine

Introduction

quote:

Sometime after the world drowned I found myself on one of the boats that go to Town.

I didn’t know yet that the world had fallen.

Chuubo's Marvelous Wish-Granting Engine is the latest game by Jenna Moran, also known for Nobilis and for her work on Exalted and Weapons of the Gods. If you're familiar with Nobilis, you might describe Chuubo as a low-powered version of Nobilis designed around slice-of-life shenanigans and small-town adventure.

If you're of a more mechanical turn of mind, Chuubo has a number of new features that make it very different from its parent game in practice. Nobilis used a point-bidding system for mortal characters, so that everybody had 8 points of Will to commit to all their various projects in a given day, with more Will allowing you to buy stipulations like "I do this correctly," "I do this and it works," "I do this and it makes things better," or maybe just "Well, I pleased myself, at least."

Chuubo still has this system but it's secondary to the Quest and XP systems, which are essentially ways to help players answer the question "What should I do next?"

quote:

Being and nothingness were swallowed, both of them, by the tidal wave of the Outside, but I hadn’t noticed yet, because I’d been living in one of the places that got covered by it, and so I’d stopped existing in any kind of defined way for a little while.

Then one of the exploring boats found Suzhou, where I’d been living. It made Suzhou exist again, more or less. It stopped being a wild, chaotic delirium and became a place again... more or less.

There's also plenty of miraculous powers for those who want to turn into a giant snake (this never helps) or command the waters of Big Lake, or something like that. The core of the gameplay comes from XP Actions, however, where you hit the right emotional beats for the genre you're aiming at in order to add XP to the pot. These XP go towards your quests, and completion of those quests allows you to make progress on the larger goals in your life. (Quests also have their own specific XP conditions, but we'll get to that later.)

quote:

I don’t think I was fully real again yet when I boarded.

I didn’t wake up, not all the way, until the boat crested the horizon of Big Lake and I saw the dockside settlement of Fortitude for the first time. Then it was like my heart woke up, and everything that had been black and white became color, and the textures of the world came back, and sound had richness and deepness once again.

It wasn’t because I’d been unreal, exactly.

It was part of it, I think, but only part of it. It was because... it was because as soon as I saw Fortitude I understood that work would be rewarded; that things had a beautiful simplicity; and that I had a home.

Basic Principles

The first part of the book is the standard rundown on "What Is An RPG and Why?" that all RPG manuals have to have. It also includes a few basic principles that are more specific to this system like "you can always act". I think you guys mostly know the drill by now, though!

The first game element that comes up that really needs explaining is going to be the eight Arcs and their colors. The path your character is moving along is an Arc, and Arcs can be customized via both the quests you take moving along them, the color of the Arc, and by a miraculous set of powers that you acquire for completing the Arc if you're playing on the miraculous scale.

(Oh, yeah, that scale is a thing. You can play a game of Chuubo's equally well with or without miraculous abilities. I almost think it would be better without, but I seem to be alone in this opinion.)

  • Blue arcs related to dealing with sealed or forbidden things—doing something you shouldn't or "shouldn't"
  • Orange arcs involve taking on a formal role and working within it
  • Green arcs involve interacting with the world and otherworld via dreams, nature, and communication with spirits
  • Red arcs involve telling stories; usually, you'll have a specific kind of story that you embody or facilitate
  • Golden arcs involve training hard and pushing yourself to become better
  • Purple arcs involve guiding, guarding and protecting others.
  • Silver arcs involve suffering, maybe a little and maybe a lot
  • Black arcs touch the unknowable and involve you walking into the hands of higher powers.

Exactly how you use this in practice will be something we explore in the next chapter, Campaigns! I will continue updating this WIR if you all wish hard enough, so please keep your hands locked in the wishing position until next time!

quote:

I guess that if you’re reading this then you are real. As I write this, you are mildly notional, of course. You can’t possibly be as real as the wood of the buildings, the depth of the air, the sounds of fish being sliced open and the smell of marlin cooking on a limestone slab. You’re part of the diffuse potential of “you could be reading this.”

But by the time you actually see this I guess you must be someone real. You must be a real, physical person, in one of the reclaimed regions, and maybe not even knowing that the world was lost. You might not even realize that you’ve been cheated, that there could be—

That there was more.

So come. Come to a little place called Town, in the middle of nowhere, circled by its reborn sun. Come, at least in play, and maybe in person if you can stand giving up some of the modern luxuries, and feel what it’s like to really live.

There is so much to experience here. You could live.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Tasoth posted:

Tiny mouse man with pants helping to haul in that catch on the boat. :3:

Oh, yeah, and there are talking rats. They have adventures!

quote:

“You’ll be fine,” said the rats, “even on the tech-roofs, as long as you are loyal, brave, and true.”

“But I’m evil,” I protested.

Dragomir stared at me a long moment, and then he shrugged. “Mind the lasers, then,” he said.

We moved on.

— Entropy II, Magister, the Angel of Fortitude,
as played by Edward Jordan

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

CHUUBO'S MARVELOUS WISH-GRANTING ENGINE

Part Two — Genres

The first big thing you'll want to decide when starting a new game of Chuubo is what genre you want to run it in. The rules support eight different types of game, each of which corresponds to one of the eight colors. They are as follows:

  • Pastoral (purple)
  • Gothic (silver)
  • Immersive Fantasy (red)
  • Techno (black)
  • Fairy Tales (green)
  • Epic Fantasy (blue)
  • Adventure Fantasy (orange)

and then there's also The Road of Trials (gold), which is a little different, because you won't actually set a whole game there.

The core of the XP engine runs around the "XP Actions" or emotional beats that each player will perform one of in each chapter. The in-character length of the chapter varies based on genre, but out-of-character a chapter lasts as long as each character needs to do one of the three or four XP Actions belonging to the genre you're playing in. So, the XP Actions for Pastoral games are Shared Action (do an ordinary thing with somebody else), Shared Reactions (talk about your feelings with somebody), and Slice of Life (look at the world around you and emote), and chapters last a week.

Once you take your XP Action for the chapter, you "fade" and let that mood summarize what you're up to for this chapter. Once that's done, it's good manners to let another player take the spotlight.

What is this for? It means that the backbone of a Pastoral game is going to be each player character doing something like watching another player character cooking, or drinking tea while watching the sunset, or having heartfelt discussions with each other, over the course of an individual week. In between these things, of course, there's plenty of time for standard player-character work like looking for the broken shards of a glass dragon or turning everybody French with your wishing machine, but these rules mean that no matter what, the timeframe is built around a certain degree of feelings-talking, tea-drinking, sunset-watching pastorality and that those are the scenes that set the pace. Meanwhile, in an Immersive Fantasy game your XP Actions revolve around beholding amazing things around you and you'll blow through three chapters in one in-game day.

(This variable pace also means that your once-per-chapter powers have different recharge times in different genres.)



PASTORAL

Pastoral games are meant to be slow and dreamlike. You'll tend to have chapters last a week and each story will last about a season, so that you'll move through the calendar as you go forward. The holidays on the calendar are important, because you get bonus XP for celebrating them. The first supplement, Fortitude: By the Docks of Big Lake, goes into more detail about the holidays and how Town celebrates them, including the awesome and apparently real Pancake Week, which involves making pancakes, wrestling, and harvest goddesses.

The three XP actions here are:

  • Shared Action: Connect emotionally to someone doing simple, honest things.
  • Shared Reactions: Connect to someone while talking about important stuff.
  • Slice of Life: Have an emotional reaction to something in the world, and get lost in the mood.

You'll use the pastoral mode to play games that remind you of Yokohama Shopping Log, Kamichu!, or some of the dreamier Ghibli films. It's also a pretty good way to simulate any of the various "club members doing nothing" shows.

GOTHIC

Gothic games are similar to Pastoral ones, but they add the element of obsession. When playing in a Gothic game, you'll use the Pastoral XP Actions, but you'll add:

  • Obsessive Action: Get worked up over something, and then go right over the edge.

Chapter lengths are going to vary in games of this time as you spiral outward and let time pass, and then spiral in again towards some event that you're highly focused on. You'll use this genre for things along the lines of Wuthering Heights or similar melodramas.

IMMERSIVE FANTASY



This one is my favorite. Originally called "Urban Fantasy," it got changed to the current name to get across the notion of losing yourself in experience of the world. Immersive games are all about exploration, about being in a world full of magic and wonder and being hungry to eat it all up. The XP Actions for Immersive Fantasy games are:

  • Sympathetic Action: See someone who's frozen up with emotion, and try to offer them help or sympathy.
  • or, Shock, the reversed form of Sympathetic Action, where you're the one who's frozen up.
  • Foreshadowing: See something happening and decide that it's important! Get caught up!
  • Discovery: Do or see something new, and declare that it's important enough to have an impact on you.

You'll use this mode for playing something in the style of Durarara!!!, The Eccentric Family or Gatchaman CROWDS.

TECHNO

Techno games build on Immersive Fantasy, and there's really only one difference: you're expected to use Rituals and Transitions a lot more often.

Rituals are odd. A Ritual is the go-to XP Action for anything that breaks the normal dramatic rules and goes straight for something stylized and magical. When you invoke your magical girl transformation sequence, that's a Ritual. A lot of other powers involve using a Ritual as well, like invoking the Marvelous Wish-Granting Engine. If your sister puts on a weird hat every week and yells at you about fate and survival strategies and then drops you down a hole, that's a Ritual too.

Performing a Ritual is a collaborative effort with everybody tossing an action or a reaction into the pot, so they're efficient sources of XP if everybody is on board. Which they may well be, if they watch the right kinds of TV shows!

A Transition is a similar kind of framing device but it's more like an short intermission between certain kinds of scenes where you stop and reflect a bit, usually with the aid of a bit of poetry. You use them to create a sense of distance or mysterium, along the lines of "You can tell the Headmaster's Methodology Tower is a special and spooky place because I have to read you a bit of 'Tyger, Tyger' before you can go in." You could also achieve a neat effect by doing something like requiring a Transition for anybody to enter or leave the School.

Next time: the other four genres!

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

ActingPower posted:

I love the Genre system of Chuubo's a lot, but there's one thing that bugs me. I think the primary genres (Pastoral, Immersive, Road of Trials, and Epic Fantasy) are much better than the secondary ones (Gothic, Techno, Fairy Tales, Adventure Fantasy). Part of that is the color system. I immediately get the connection between Pastoral, Shepherd, Work and Study, and Calling (all quiet and peaceful); I get the connection between all of the Red things and Immersive Fantasy (being emotionally invested, suprised, and driven); I get the connection between Orange stuff and the Road of Trials (all being about struggles and achieving greatness); and I even get the connection between Blue and the Epic Fantasy (being all about incredible powers and mighty feats). But what does Gothic have to do with Setting (or Emptiness, really, or Something to Deal With)? Or what about Techno and Mystic? (The connection between Techno and Ritual/Transitions is clear in-book, though kind of strained.) Green is always about walking two paths, except for Fairy Tales (okay, so transformation does happen in Fairy Tales, but it's not what I'd characterize them with). And Yellow... okay, Yellow makes sense, but why aren't there any Yellow XP Actions in the Yellow genre set?!

It's definitely not symmetrical. As with a lot of things Jenna's done recently, it seems to be basically a distillation of her ideas about how stories work.

(As for Gothic and silver, though, I think the common thread is suffering.)

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

CHUUBO'S MARVELOUS WISH-GRANTING ENGINE

Part Three — Genres, Some More

The Road of Trials

The next genre in our magical mystery tour is the Road of Trials, where everything is awful. You don't really play a game on the Road of Trials, because that would be awful. Instead, when things are really bad and you've got some suffering that can't be avoided, you'll shift from Immersive Fantasy or Adventure Fantasy or whatever and spend some time on the Road of Trials.

Things get weird out on the Road of Trials. This isn't really the kind of game that likes to focus too much on tribulation porn, so instead of gory details what you'll often get are breaks from reality. Things will turn psychedelic and you'll start to have experiences where singing vultures taunt you with canteens of water held just out of your reach. Breaks from reality can also happen in more pleasant circumstances, like daydreaming and temporarily wandering into the kingdom in the sky.

The reality of these experiences is questionable, but the thing about being questionable is that the answer to "did that actually happen" isn't necessarily "no." The evidence for the singing vulture tends to be cleared away, but not perfectly. If you have a question about this, the HG is encouraged to use one of three magical phrases:

  • "Let us never speak of this again.
  • "...surprising no one."
  • "And how it works? That's your problem."

With these, you could explain away almost anything!

The XP Actions for the Road of Trials are:

  • (Suffer) Adversity (Be in a really unpleasant situation, and then either tip straight into delirium or give up.)
  • (Suffer) Corruption (Be corrupted by some outside influence and experience surreal effects as it grows stronger.)
  • (Suffer) Trauma (Experience or be reminded of some trauma, and experience surreal effects as your wounds deepen.)
  • Never Say Die! (Be completely outmatched, and fight until you fall over.)

Fairy Tales



The Fairy Tale genre builds on the Road of Trials, but adds "an element of destiny or transformation" to all your trials and tribulations. Or, I guess you could say, it turns random suffering into trials and tribulations, with the sense that there's some kind of point behind it all.

Fairy Tales add one more XP action to the roster:

  • (Suffer) Transformation/Metamorphosis (Be transformed by outside influence, and experience surreal effects as it grows stronger.)

This is exactly the same as (Suffer) Corruption, but it does have a much nicer name!

Epic Fantasy



Epic Fantasy is for stories about great deeds and big decisions. It's also the genre that contains my favorite XP Action! The actions for this genre are:

  • Science, Faith, and Sorcery (When thinking about how something works, propose an idea, and then test it.)
  • Decisive Action (After narrating your thoughts or having someone narrate them for you, take some action you can't back down from.)
  • Wicked Action (When doing something you know you oughtn't, fall into a delirious abyss of self-indulgence.)

Science, Faith and Sorcery is my favorite of all the XP Actions. I think it says a lot about the philosophy behind Chuubo that these three concepts are all the same thing rather than any given two of them being opposed. It's all about putting yourself at risk to test the validity of an idea, whether you just want to know if it's true, you're putting your trust in the truth of it, or whether you're actually trying to make it true through force of will.

Epic fantasy is a good genre for stories in the vein of Norse myth or something like The Dark is Rising.

Adventure Fantasy



Adventure Fantasy builds on Epic Fantasy, but in addition to all the larger-than-life moments it maintains a mortal perspective. It's possible to be overwhelmed by events. It's possible to get into Trouble.

  • Trouble (When a threat approaches, be overwhelmed and outmatched.)

(It's interesting how this pushes players to calibrate their description of their personal abilities and the things that oppose them! In most games, you want to win against your enemies, and to do so quickly and efficiently, but in a Chuubo game, you need to spend time being outmatched by them if you want to get XP and make progress.)

Adventure Fantasy is one of the broadest genres, and would be excellent for stories that remind you of books by Diana Wynne Jones or a more traditional swords-and-sorcery setup.

NEXT TIME: Character building! Does anybody have a particular kind of character they'd like to see in the Chuubo system?

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I look foward to the potential for Changeling20 to be a Revised version that actually does some hard thinking about what the game is supposed to be doing.

(I regret that Mage20 was not this.)

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Primordial.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Mors Rattus posted:

Geists come with a lot of power out of the box. They don't really improve too much from there, but when you can deal like five to ten agg per turn, you don't really need to? But it seems to be largely unintentional.

The Bound are kings of the mountain at killing things, ruining lives, being bloody difficult to kill and dealing with ghosts. Outside of that they don't have much going for them.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Oh, god, that thing.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Eh, the Technocracy cares about as much about progress and freedom as the modern First World does—that is to say, a lot on paper and when it's their personal progress and freedom in question, and not so much when it's about the freedom of the people in the Third World who work at Foxconn.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

theironjef posted:

Looking at the results of googling "Totally Spies is a fetish thing" tells me that at the very least, it's viewed as a fetish thing by the sort of people that view everything as a fetish thing, namely tropers and fic writers. The first thing i opened had the phrase "This troper melted when Clover's feet were out in the following episodes" and I assume Clover must be one of the totally spies, but I'm guessing that troper melts when you can like see one of the Burger King Kid's Club character's feet, too.

Generally speaking it isn't so much any specific thing they did that made people arrive at the conclusion that it was a fetish show, but the fact that by the time it was over they'd covered so many very specific fetishes that it almost had to be intentional.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

It's also a small industry where everybody is struggling, so I don't think it's really surprising for fans to get defensive and try to push back against bad reviews, since they can meaningfully hurt the game by putting a few people off who might have been interested.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I find myself quite annoyed that they made a group who are basically the worst false stereotype of the oMage Etherites made flesh, and named them the "Etherites."

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

When last I inquired about it, it seems like the Wall of the Faithless was originally supposed to be unique to Myrkul, the evil god of death, and its continued presence after his demise is the result of a whole bunch of author misunderstandings.

It really needs to get edited out, because it kind of warps the entire setting's concept of divinity around it. I don't think you're intended to view gods as useless, bloated parasites.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

wiegieman posted:

They literally dragged the new god of death to court for "excessive humanity" because he stopped throwing souls in to the wall and was worse to evil people than to good people, and won the case. Murder the gods and topple their thrones.

Yeah, that was the bit that was based on an author misunderstanding what was wanted, as I understood it.

It's just a terrible addition to a setting that obviously wants you to be interested in playing a follower of the various good gods.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Beast is actually out of development and should be up for Kickstarter sometime in June, with the more-or-less final text available, Demon-style.

The leaked version that was poorly received was the pre-development alpha and could have changed a bunch.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Siivola posted:

Yeah, let's find some witches. I want to see what Mage society looks like from the outside.

I don't know that you'll find that in Witchfinders, which I seem to recall took some criticism for not being particularly compatible with Awakening.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Awakening 2e is going to be pretty explicit about how mages don't understand everything and don't even think they understand everything. Which is great for them, because running into things they don't understand is how they powerlevel.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

The Tenchi Muyo! setting would be a great setting for an RPG if you use all the expanded universe materials from novels and things, but it would be a weird place for character balance. Tenchi and his wives are so overpowered in their own ways that all plots become absurdity—hell, the plot of the third OAV involves a plan to destroy Earth with a giant space station that Ryoko pretty much disassembles on a drunken lark while everybody else is dealing with the more important business of getting Mihoshi's brother a wife.

You'd also have to have a way of dealing with characters like Washu (is god, created the universe, commands limitless super-tech) with Mihoshi (has no skills, wins constantly) to make them both vaguely useful as PCs.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

Well, you pretty much have to carry the significant vessel to wherever you want to use the charges, since you can't carry them around once you sober up, and people are strongly motivated to steal it from you, so while you definitely have easier access to significant magick it isn't without drawbacks.

Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I find Sin-Eaters* easiest to explain if you describe them as being walking hauntings. They're basically every power ever attributed to angry ghosts and can pull The Haunting of Hill House out of their pocket at a moment's notice.

They are very good at:

1) not dying;
2) making other people's life miserable;
3) ghost stuff.

They are not good at all at things other than that but if you have to fight one you probably won't notice their lack of general productivity.

* I like Geist but I think the actual worst thing about it is that neither of the words in the title are useful to describe the protagonists.

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Rand Brittain
Mar 24, 2013

"Go on until you're stopped."

I would honestly say Book of the Deceived is one of the worst books in the entire nWoD. If the Mummy splats were overwritten, the Deceived splats are a hundred times worse.

(Playable ghosts are even worse because it takes the personhood of ghosts, which is a big and important mystery in several other gamelines, and gives it a canonical answer, "ghosts are people if they take this merit, and if not, not.")

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