Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
  • Post
  • Reply
Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





As far as I can tell, having read Werewolf 2E and comparing it to Requiem 2E, second edition really enjoys introducing a new Out of Context threat - for the wolves it's the Idigam, unspirits of ancient power and protean form, that break all sorts of rules of spirit - and having that as sort of a back end to a general setting book. So you have the Vampire Politics core of Vampire, along with the Strix, who are the Big Weird Thing vampires can be made to deal with. I feel like the 2E ideal is probably to run a vampire politics game for a while then drop in some Strix.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Robindaybird posted:

or the beast becomes Strix - embrace the beast too much, diablerie too much, get strong enough - then ??? shadow owl

Wrong, but better, Beast.
...there's, what, four different Beasts in the Chronicles? In Vampire, in Changeling, the Supernal animals of the Primal Wild in Mage, and now the gameline. Am I missing any?

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Nuns with Guns posted:

It just occurred to me that one of the reasons I find Beast so galling is it how it starts out reading like some parody of the objectivist concept of the übermensch. What with being a self-absorbed superbeing feeding on the misery of others. But then it doubles back around with "actually the Beast is right and really is being held back by the untermensch who are wrong!"

Fun fact! Famous White Wolf prehistory game Exalted was originally written by a Burke-style conservative who hated Randianism and wanted to encode a nuanced critique of that particular 'superior being' idea into a historically grounded setting. Which is pretty rad.
Although personally I like Exalted and the Solars without the total doom-and-gloom all-heroes-fail assumptions of 1e, I do love that it's very intentionally not the case that just being super strong and skilled means you're doing the right thing at all.

E: Esme Weatherwax as a Hunter would have Integrity 10. "Do you know which one you are?" "This one."

Joe Slowboat fucked around with this message at 05:13 on Jan 22, 2017

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I admit, I'm horribly curious how one could make Rozencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (any scene) work in this context. It seems a bit outside what this is meant to represent, but it's probably my favorite play, so it's what came to mind.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Hey thread,
I was wondering if I could get a bit of help - I'm trying to hunt down all the F&F reviews of fantasy (or, I guess, SF) RPGs that were explicitly or guardedly Gnostic in concept.

Currently my list is Kult! (straightforward gnosticism), In Dark Alleys (even more doctrinaire Gnosticism, complete with Demiurge and Sophia), and Mage: The Awakening (a bit less orthodox). Mage: The Ascension is sorta Gnostic but I don't know if that's really a central theme. Are there any others I've missed? Especially the blatant ones, if you can think of any.

This is entirely out of curiosity, I'm interested in seeing how much Gnosticism shows up in RPGs after running into it in the above. Also, a homebrew setting I'm running ended up more Gnostic than I intended and I'm curious if it's just a sort of natural fit, as cosmologies go.

Thanks!

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





inklesspen posted:

Aletheia is sort of that by way of X-Files and also a fuckton of

Oo, thanks, this is a great example. It's also extremely New Age, Human Potential Movement, and upbeat. I'm honestly surprised it doesn't have magic dolphins.

It's happy Gnosticism!

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I'd just like to chime in that 'Dr. Moreau's Most Lovable PMC' would be a pretty great campaign concept in anything but Rifts. Pugmire meets Mad Max, what's not to love?

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Tendales posted:

In TNG, the transporter pretty clearly makes a replicator copy at the target, what with all the talk of pattern buffers and double Rikers and so on. Ok, fine.

In TOS, though, they don't have replicator technology. That means the transporters had to be actually moving your for real body through space, or warping you there, or something, but the original is clearly moved, not duplicated.

That means that starfleet used to have a transporter that didn't kill you, but they decided to replace it with a model that does.

I just want to point out that it is actually a matter of philosophical debate whether the 'disintegration teleporter' kills you. Some of us do think the Ship of Theseus is still the Ship of Theseus after you take it apart and ship it somewhere else.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Delurking to say, I never heard about this Mark guy but the dragon game is a mess on every level, just from what we see here, so I don't think it's anything beyond that.
Also, Zak is such scum that an OP freelancer fled the company rather than be anywhere near that harassing, vicious inanity. So, anyone who thinks it's a question of 'envy' ... Well I'm just glad they're probably just Zak's sad self.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Wapole Languray posted:

As such, most of the book is setting, gobs and gobs of shockingly good setting. The best way I could describe it is if you blended Planescape, Jim Henson’s Labyrinth, and Kill 6 Billion Demons, and Metroid together, then hit it with a thermonuclear war to get the kinks out.

You're missing the central ingredient, I think - Dark Souls.
The themes, the core conceit of 'you don't die permanently, but you might lose yourself,' the castle - this all screams Souls game. You even have an impressive Capitalized Noun for PCs which denotes what makes them immortal, like Chosen Undead or Unkindled. Unbroken is a clear hat-tip to that. Which isn't a huge surprise; Soulsborne RPGs are pretty clearly on the horizon the way souls-likes are becoming huge in video games. I hope it does it well!

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





SpookBus posted:

Fragged Empire has a Soulsborne setting book in kickstarter right now actually, so it's coming soon than you'd think!

That is in fact the very horizon I was referring to.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Hostile V posted:

Can one gain a shitload of immortality by shooting a Mummy in the back of the head due to the fact that Mummies were born in ???? BC?

Do you have to permakill the immortal to get the Harvest? If so, Mummies might indeed give the jackpot, but first you would have to figure out how to stop them coming back ever again.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





See, I'm really enjoying the Imperial description while at the same time I can't bring myself to care about the ninjas. Not that I think the Empire are the good guys - it's clearly a shades-of-grey-and-also-the-Emperor-might-be-a-demon situation. But much like what little I know of Mage: The Ascension, it seems like the Empire (or in Mage, the Technocracy) has a massive advantage in their writing. All of the Imperial factions are inherently tied together not just by a common cause but by well-established organizations, cultural roles, and relationships. The monks and Silver Blades and Jadeforgers and the like are always going to be bound to or indirectly struggling against the Golden Lions and Iron Breakers. Heck, even without the Very Evil factions, the Emperor himself is a great multifaceted figure, someone to whom allegiance is theoretically owed but who will almost definitely be in conflict with idealistic PCs, the best kind of PCs.
The ninja clans seem much more like how I think about rival or antagonist factions, since they're all free-floating; they seem easier to slot into a game at will without dealing much with their support structure, which fits how I think about antagonists more than how I think about writing for PCs.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I'll be honest, I really like those tree spiders.
Of course, they're in absolutely the wrong environment.

Put them someplace with actual trees and lots of mist, and you have these incredibly tall, frail ambush predators that can cause a really impressive, surprising ambush ('You feel the trailing vines suddenly tighten around you, and you are dragged screaming above the trees!') without necessarily being a huge threat (they're not actually that strong, since their entire biological deal is desperately trying to outrun the square-cube law, so their body is ultra light and relatively low on muscles). For the players, the main danger is killing or escaping them without falling and splatting.

Plus, if you can tame or command them, they would be extremely cool mounts.
None of this is really present in the writeup, obviously, but the art is really evocative and sometimes a weird monster makes for a fun encounter.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





We all know an orangutan is a straight upgrade for wizards.

E: what kind of 'standard' mutations/marks do warhams wizards get anyways? Is this like 'my fire wizard has red hair' or 'my fire wizard has literally flames on his head'?

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Isn't the point to find out that Perdition was actually planned, and when the force field generators power down (as was hinted in one of these goddamn things) you run in and presumably get access to the hellproof equipment after beating up some labcoated evil scientists?
And then I would assume you can choose to either blow the ship up or crash it on Earth, ripping a hole to the Nether and infesting the planet with demons. But that's just because that would be a somewhat reasonable endpoint for this terrible setting.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





One thing I'm noticing about Kuro - you could absolutely reproduce a ton of horror plots just from the technologies available. AR, police-grade hallucinogens, virtual children... if this were a dedicated cyberpunk horror game without explicit supernatural elements, you could get a really cool game about ghosts in the machine, the erosion of reality, and societal decay.

So basically certain parts of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex.

That could be really good, though - I'd be impressed if it were set up to be 'don't introduce the supernatural directly, start off with sinister malfunctions and twists on the technology players surround themselves with.'

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Ok but that Yomi cricket should be available in every corner store because there is no way in hell thats not a scam. 'You open the box, the hell-cricket escapes!' Uh huh. Sure.

I actually really enjoy all of the occultech that could just be scams, which is most of it. Just make 'rogue, possibly insane AI with demonic imagery' the source of every anomaly, imply that literal demons from hell might be what high-level AIs are made of, and suddenly all of these extremely basic magical items are fascinating interplays of hope, lies, and occultism.

Commit to minimal supernatural influence, game! Punch above your weight!
Then have traditional ghost stories happening in the form of rogue tech.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Mr. Maltose posted:

That's because humans cannot be completely impartial. Impartiality is a goal to work towards despite the fact it can never be fully reached.

Also the idea that it's unfair to the player because you didn't label, for example, the monster bat that eats souls as bad is. It's certainly a stance to take I guess.

'Unfair' seems the wrong way to put it. I would say, fundamentally poorly constructed for what a game book is, for the most part.
Now, I personally could hugely enjoy a game that takes a Gene Wolfe-esque stance, in which the perspective of players is almost certainly going to require a perverse or antagonistic relationship with the text, finding the flaws and disconnects in the setting to discover the stories that can be told in it.
But that's a lot to ask of people and is going to create an incoherent game as a whole. There's a difference between 'subtext' and 'you will literally get two different settings if you read this text assuming the author is trying to help you understand the setting, or trying to trick you.' Briefly mentioning that a society is reliant on feeding people's souls to a monster, then going right back to how great they actually are from their perspective, just strikes me as unhelpful and likely to make anyone not reading it as a scholarly text confused.
Plus, plenty of authors will accidentally write moral atrocities into fantasy cultures and both they and many readers will go along with it.
Compare that annoying tendency of steampunk settings to do little more than explain how great Victoriana and the British Empire were; if you aren't at least a little specific in outlining the moral failings of societies, anyone reading the elfgame book for fun rather than sociological analysis is going to be likely to take the author at their word.

Anyways this all boils down to 'locking the actual plot behind textual analysis is going to make the book less useful to a lot of readers, for no real reason beyond a stylistic dedication to a kind of rarified suspension of judgment that in context comes off as more than a little smug.' In my sleep-deprived opinion.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Terrible Opinions posted:

This sort of description is making me fear that I read Shadow of the Torturer very wrong.

You don't need to do the peeling-back-layers thing to get a very good book out of the Book of the New Sun. Severian's emotional journey does benefit from reading a little into his memory, though - people with perfect recall tend to be bad at understanding patterns and critically analyzing what's given to them, instead passively absorbing huge amounts of information.
Also Severian is just not very self-aware a lot of the time. He believes untrue things about his own thought process, because his introspection is really weak.
These traits combined mean that the narration often occludes the reality of events, even as the reader can sift through his memories. A great early example is how Valeria pretty openly flirts with him when he's chasing after Triskele, and he completely and utterly misses it.

Uuuuuh to put this back on topic, has anyone ever read the GURPS New Sun book? I know it exists and I know it's the second-saddest I've ever been to find out a setting I loved had been made into an RPG and the RPG was GURPS.
The first saddest was the Hellboy GURPS book.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Can I put in a request to F&F Spires of Altdorf?
I recognize it's a campaign book, and I'm not at all interested in the campaign, but I just bought the Humble Bundle of literally all of WHFRP2E and Spires looks like the best sourcebook for the capital of the Empire, complete with (from my skim) hilarious, Ankh-Morporkian levels of historical mercantile and legislative infighting between the colleges, the merchants, the nobles, and literally everyone else. Plus when the elfs dropped the Colleges of Magic into Altdorf it seems to have permanently broken the map, leaving the entire city borderline unnavigable.
In short, I feel like I could easily run the Unseen University staff as wizards in Altdorf with a Sam Vimes running around with the guards, and I want to know if that accords.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Mr. Maltose posted:

The Vadeli and honestly Fonrit are worse than the Lunars, let's be real here.

Yeah I'll be honestly impressed at any society managing to be more evil than Slavery Is The Fundamental Law Of Reality Civ over there. Not really a good kind of impressed though.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Cythereal posted:

Pretty sure this exists in the World of Darkness somewhere.

I mean... play Hunter: The Vigil, with a compact that specifically hunts werewolves, and you're like 2/3 there. If the Cheiron Corporation was a church, you'd be pretty much all the way there.
Or, just play werewolves, they're also doing something similar it's just more natural for them.

That being said, Bloodborne: The Vigil would need a better combat system. I've, uh, got a halfway-functional Exalted 3e Bloodborne hack in a cursed .doc file on my laptop, haunting me.

EDIT: I think I read you as being more keen on Bloodborne specifically than you intended! "Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster" is basically Hunter: The Vigil in a nutshell though, so I think my post still stands. It just doesn't have to only be werewolves, it can be all sorts of things that you murder and steal their methods to murder better until you're basically an 'All of Their Strengths' character plus alcoholism and a deep sour feeling where your soul used to be.

Joe Slowboat fucked around with this message at 03:15 on Oct 7, 2017

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I went to look at that with a lot of hope, but... I'm really unconvinced by the setting of Aeternum as described.
One of the great things about Bloodborne is that it has a really strong sense of place, in the city of Yharnam, which is just a city. Aeternum falls into a weird trap a bunch of fantasy settings seem to fall into, where instead of just having a city that is large, and assuming any number of stories can be told there, the city is infinite. Which means it can barely have history or change, and it feels incredibly hollow to me.

There are a few 'infinite city' settings that work for me but only because they're significantly alien, and draw on inspiration from science fiction arcologies and similar megacity concepts. Aeternum's really stacked the deck against its setting working out.

...I have more nitpicks but they're inane; suffice it to say, Fragged Empire seems cool but Fragged Aeternum seems to have gotten its planescape in my bloodborne and I'm not enthused.

To avoid being purely negative, Fragged Seas looks a lot more interesting to me. Ironically its description in the kickstarter feels more like Bloodborne to me than Aeternum did.

Joe Slowboat fucked around with this message at 03:55 on Oct 7, 2017

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Nessus posted:

I'm guessing either some kind of organic-limitless situation where it's like a living City entity that is just City forever as a macro-concept, or else a Trantor-style planetary ecumenopolis. I think the latter could be cool but you'd have to figure out what you're doing.

Pretty much this; it seems to be a natural place to go with an urban setting (more setting = more stories, right?) and it does get at a sense of immensity, but it rarely works out that well.
Trantor is an example of it done decently, in my opinion, because the limitations and costs of that megatropolis are considered. And even there they never cover how you would have completely different languages in different regions, entirely different cultures of architecture and governance even under an overarching system - it's simply too large, and no longer plays by the rules a city does in real life.
And that rarely comes up.

Also whenever I go back and look at the Aeternum spoilers I just find it lackluster, not least because it seems to be underpinned with an overly Victorian morality play combined with amoral cosmic horror, when Bloodborne is actually an 18th century early-history-of-science story of discovery and hubris set in pseudo-Prague. That's my being extremely picky, though.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Mors Rattus posted:

Crab Clan: You get +1 Earth and +1 Fitness. You have base 30 Status. The Crab Clan lives at the southern border, standing guard on the Kaiu Wall around the Shadowlands, where the forces of Jigoku lie. The Crab Clan are rowdy by Rokugani standards, often rude and generally quite pragmatic. They have no patience for weakness of any kind, as any weakness could bring disaster to the entire group. You cannot, after all, expect honor or peace from goblins and demons. All Crab Clan characters have:
  • The signs of the Shadowlands Taint in its advanced stages.


So, to confirm, does this mean they all look Tainted, or they can all recognize Taint in others?

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





"Born to" right?

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Night10194 posted:

It's why the piss poor adventures in the WHFRP books are such a drag to me,

Do you have a sense of which of them are worthwhile? I have a group that's considered playing for that Old World charm, especially Brets, and I'd love to know if the Bret quickstart or the Duchy of the Damned adventures are worth poking at.
Or that collection of short adventures. (I got the humble bundle, so I have all the books from 2e).

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I do like the idea, floated a little while back, of a Cosmic Horror revelation that is actually 'the trick to being a good person is to be kind and loving' - specifically, it's the revelation you acquire after sinking most of your life and intellectual energy into strange and abstruse philosophy, burrowing down into the depths of the world seeking the hidden truth.

I've known people who would almost certainly swear themselves to evil if it let them have a more complex system of reasoning. I know this because at least one of them pretty much did (in almost those words), it was an extremely dumb college thing to do. Here's a bit of advice, anyone who explicitly identifies with the gnostic demiurge is probably a dick.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Can the good guys in We Can't Even Get Gnosticism Right just trade their, and I want to stress this, absolutely white supremacist and war-crimes-committing Lion-O/Eugene de Kock for Talbot?
And then I guess figure out what to do about "I'm literally Captain America but my Stand is the Red Skull."

Seriously this goes beyond dumb to incomprehensible. What are the qualities that make people one thing rather than the other, blind chance and needing to have equal edge on both teams?

Also you know what's a great story about twelve human granted deification to bring about some great epoch in humanity and all aesthetics are informed by popular music? Wicked and the Divine, and boy does it ever blow TLE out of the water.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Oh hey, Starfinger religion is the most boring, this is me being surprised.

For the record, the term "henotheism" applies to a polytheist who nonetheless solely worships one god above all others; this doesn't imply disrespect to other gods, but one has a specific loyalty. This may imply (as in modern Bhakti tradition Hinduism) that the one god you worship is the most powerful, absolute, and/or important, but it could just mean that they're the god whose favor matters to your life.
The related term, kathahenotheism, means the worship of only one god /at once/ - the Vedas in Hinduism are a great example of that, because each deva is honored as the most powerful and important in their particular hymns.

Also for the record, the tradition in which all Devas are aspects or forms of Brahman, the Absolute or Godhead, is relatively recent historically and also not necessarily hugely widespread. It's comparable to Deism or Scholastic philosophy- a religious movement popular among theologians and educated scholars of religion, but not entirely representative of most believers' practice. Not to say such Vedanta ideas aren't widespread, but it's a dangerous simplification to say that 'Hinduism' holds Vedanta beliefs. It's a mistake I made for like two years!

In fact if you want an example of 'messy' religion you cannot do better than Hinduism; the many traditions that make up the religion are united more by a common culture of origin (mostly) and shared history than by theological abstractions, and there is no central doctrinal source other than the widely interpreted texts.

TL;DR Hindu theology is complex, sophisticated, and deeply connected to the history of its texts and practitioners. Starfinger theology is bad.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Night10194 posted:

Yeah like I'm not even asking for 'this needs to work like real polytheistic religions' or whatever. If you're just going to have D&D fantasy gods at least do something wild and fun with them instead of 'High level PC who ascended into the template for PC paladins'. Give me some kind of twist, goddamnit. And fewer of them.

How about Unknown Armies: there is one god per class, and the God of Rogues is the best rogue to ever rogue. However, if another rogue ever does better, the current God retires. This is dumb but, I would argue, still better than completely bland Classic Golarion Gods.

Other thoughts: have gods be metaphysically linked to stars, so that each system has its own pantheon unless something weird has happened. Have far-travelers carry their religions with them. Then the star Jedi make (a little) sense, since they revere the laws of the universe which even gods obey.

Or really anything. Do anything. Do SOMETHING.

E: my pleasure! I'm not an expert but I find Hindu religion and art incredibly interesting, so I've tried to learn what I can.
Also, your mention of Marduk capturing conquered gods makes me think- how much better would a space fantasy setting be than Starfinger if you applied that model of god-hood to star systems? Or just generally do Space Sumeria, that would be great (there's a really excellent short story, A Soldier of the City, about space Sumerian civilization, I can't remember the author's name right now)

Joe Slowboat fucked around with this message at 17:25 on Oct 22, 2017

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Alien Rope Burn posted:

it was always sad to see the weirdest or most interesting things washed out in favor of just slotting them into the Greco-Roman-Norse model.

And most works don't even do a good job of presenting the sort of proto-Indo-European-derived pantheon/family structure in an interesting way. There's no intermarriage with the Vanar or mystery cults or whatever, it's all just domain-name-aesthetic-done.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Kavak posted:

Omikron the Nomad Soul

Bowie no

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Pretty sure the revolver can fire down straight lines from room to room, making it somewhat more functional to have the end of the haunt be 'hunt down all the werewolves.'
That being said I've been in two games where that haunt got drawn and they were absolute massacres, the wolves tore through us like tissue paper.

It's not a particularly balanced game but it's a fun one for board game nights.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





hyphz posted:

one-track

Did you mean

hyphz posted:

one-note

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Alien Rope Burn posted:

Well, not so much in my experience, mainly because Brawl-dedicated grapplers will have a bunch of tools that basically end a fight once they're in there, particularly because they generally have a higher strength than most of their targets do, so they can basically own the grapple once it connects.

It's balanced in terms of the fact that it's not necessarily easier to hit with (though Brawl gets some really cheap adders to attack when grappling) but once it connects a lot of characters will be utterly helpless unless they have a specific counter to it, whereas most characters will have some defense against normal attacks.

Is it particularly easier to get those Gambit successes than a fight-ending number of lethal health levels, though?
That's the real balance point, as far as I can tell.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I quite like the idea that vampire emotion is basically deadened and delusional, because A. Only players really dedicated to playing weird inhuman characters will actually do that at all, and B. It very strongly supports the thematic content of the game. Vampires are hideous predators passing as human, and their apparently human emotions are just them going through the motions. Only the thirst and the fear of the sun are real.

Which leads to the second thing, which is that they're predatory monsters at base and this 'new vampire staring contest' is meant to enforce that. I think it's overstated and wouldn't enforce the RAW; something like a one or two die social penalty if you lose rather than full fight-or-flight makes more sense. Maybe a condition.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





I mean, I always got the impression nVampire was about playing a bad person, whose defining character trait is how they justify living off the blood of others. Everything on top of that is cool, sure, but the core of vampire is being a dead thing pretending to be a person.
Draugr are what happens when they can't pretend that any longer.

There's a great bit in Pratchett's Carpe Jugulum, from the POV of a youngish vampire, about how he became a vampire because he thought it would help him meet girls, only it turns out it's a bit more than that and when he does meet girls, all he can think about is how nice their neck looks. It's played for comedy of course, but it absolutely points to the core of vampire experience: other humans are now food. You are a corpse that kills so that it can continue to pretend to live. Having fluff that supports that is vital to making vampires vampires, frankly.
This doesn't mean 'vampires should be mopey' - hell, I'd argue that moping around is far less likely for an inhuman predator in human form than for a human who can never go outside in daylight again. And most young vampires are clearly pretty good at playing at humanity, especially with the various covenants being dedicated to finding something besides feeding to unlive for. But sometimes the mask should slip, and the single-minded hunting horror be revealed.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





2e nMage doesn't go hard on Atlantis anymore - there's an explicit black box around what exactly the Time Before, i.e. history before it was rewritten by the tyrannous demiurges of social control, looked like. Ruins from that other world are weird, often inconsistent, involve strange magics, and might well be from multiple mutually-exclusive Times Before, though that's a bit of an outside possibility.

Personally I'm a huge fan of the Orders, the Exarchs, the Gnostic cosmology - especially where the gosticism gets combined with postmodern ideas, like the Exarch known as the Eye. Foucault was right, apparently!
The Seers are the Technocracy done right, don't @ me.

It helps that, like, the Higher Truth is Out There, but individual mages have deeply personal revelations of it and may well disagree strenuously about magical concepts, without everything dissolving into 'oh we're all right because reality is basically not a thing.' I really don't like the idea of consensus reality, for a number of reasons, and oMage definitely did not assuage them.

Joe Slowboat fucked around with this message at 04:12 on Nov 1, 2017

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • Post
  • Reply