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Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





I think these guys ought to be able to have creative interface but at some point you're all becoming a bunch of snarky Orphans and there's no point in having these disparate groups at all. If a part of the point of the game is that the Traditions are starting to huddle up and fuse together because they have no choice, that's actually pretty cool, but you could make that more explicit.

I also got the feeling that Mage kind of had what I felt happened with Scion happen to it - they build the entire concept around a particular style of doing things (probably the Hermetics for Mage, probably the Greeks for Scion) and kind of made everyone else into a different version of that. This is a pretty common White Wolf practice, now that I think about it; it just pops less in the earlier WoD games, because everyone is in fact doing BASICALLY the same thing (being a dracula, raging furrily) while in Mage, you're actually doing nine completely different sets of things, several of which include drastically different sets of other things inside of them.

Mors Rattus posted:

oh dear god the mage arguments are eating the thread shut up about paradigms you assholes
Someone's actually reviewing the book, it's germane!!

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Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Domus posted:

I never had a DM who thought Correspondence was about teleporting and such. In our circles, and I believe in RaW, you can't effect anything outside yourself without at least two spheres in Correspondence. And then it's only things you can touch. So Correspondence is pretty much required for most characters.
I think that GM was loving you over, Correspondence was like for space distortions and poo poo. You can still cast a fireball down a hallway in front of you. You needed correspondence to put that fireball in a hallway across town.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





The take that I always preferred is that the Technocracy had gotten wicked but individual Technocrats were typically motivated by idealistic crusades, and probably saw themselves as embattled defenders of the Masses. Which is really perhaps the one big heroic beat in their favor: as much as they fluoridate their water and program them with TV, they are at least attempting to do good and protect from the bad. You could pretty easily do a Men in Black-style campaign with Technocrats.

However, this may require advanced levels of thought beyond that present in the pint of blue mush in Phil Brucato's noggin.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





I think the idea is supposed to be that the Technocracy has made people dependent on their system (which also happens to gently caress you, Johnny Trad, because your system is at best slightly compatible and more likely wholly incompatible with theirs) and that this bloats the Technocracy with power, which they are using unjustly, both in terms of various diseases of modernity and the fact that they're after You, Johnny Trad.

The issue is where belief and consensus reality (which is taken of course as a literal thing rather than a cultural thing) start to get weird. Of course that weirdness is probably why it keeps getting talked about.

Rand Brittain posted:

No, no it isn't. Note that the Traditions have Hermetics, Choristers, and Etherites all in the same group.

The Traditions endgame is "everyone can use whatever paradigm they want," not "leeches are mandatory."
Oh, no, I doubt that'd be the endgame. But that's just human nature talking. My understanding is that the Traditions' cooperation is in large part (though of course not the whole part) because they have a powerful common enemy.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





unseenlibrarian posted:

(But if you think the technocracy doesn't have people like that, a reminder that they include the Syndicate, aka "Just the sort of assholes who'd sit around high-fiving each other over Citizens United.")
I have it on good authority that an Iteration X/Akashic swordsman can end these memes.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Covok posted:

I think an important thing to remember is that oWoD is down with all the New-Age-Hippie-Mumbo-Jumbo so we're going to dislike a lot of it since we're not down with all that New-Age-Hippie-Mumbo-Jumbo. Not saying it's right, but it is kind of something to consider.
I also think the new age retro hippy talk is presented here like some grand mind-loving truth involving the cosmos and being really smart and stuff, while in Werewolf it's more like an alternate universe cosmology. Werewolf, despite involving howling wolfmen from somewhat ethnically offensive cultural backgrounds, has always felt more conceptually complete to me than Mage.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





MonsieurChoc posted:



I like the oWoD fine, but it was very much a creature of it's time and should have stayed dead. The nWoD was a more than worthy successor.
I agree completely, they should have gone straight to Wraith.

Mage 20th sounds like a heap of poo poo from this writeup. I found V20 to be enjoyable if not really any kind of groundbreaking thing. I actually liked what I read in W20 because it seemed like they really "got" Werewolf and even dared to add the forbidden ingredient of "hope." Perhaps the 20th edition things will all just turned out to be distillations of the real essence of the various oWoD lines.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Night10194 posted:

The necessity and a clear-eyed theme is really important to pulling this off, as is making sure you don't deny the agency of the people involved in the event. I've often found if a game claims supernatural poo poo was behind everything ever but oh man Hitler is super special and the one actual human doing actual human things it's equally disgusting from another standpoint, because the only place the author is allowing agency is in tragedy and evil.
Yeah that kind of makes Hitler a good guy in a way. Or at least, an avatar of human self-determination. I'm going to take the brave and heroic stance that Hitler should either not appear (outside of perhaps historical or time-travel scenarios - maybe) or should be a figure of fun.

Though this does remind me of my GURPS WWII collection - though after my failed reviews I'm hesitant to start something new up.

e: A quick check of the German book for WWII does reveal that is apparently written up in GURPS Who's Who 2, and is a 147 point character, but largely on the strength of his high social rank as, you know, der Fuhrer. The only supernatural note is that if the GM permits the Luck advantage, Hitler has it, which seems historically legitimate.

Nessus fucked around with this message at 09:11 on Jan 9, 2016

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Mussolini always gets short shrift in these situations. Hell sometimes he seems to come off as a "good guy," just because he was too busy trying to conquer chunks of north Africa to give much of a poo poo about hating the Jews.

I mean this is the guy's drat national HQ building: Yes, that's Mussolini's own mug, artistically rendered.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Alien Rope Burn posted:

Yeah, I read a book on whether or not Nazi Germany could have discovered the bomb first, and the answer is "well, maybe if they hadn't had a habit of alienating scientists of a certain faith for a decade and the Nazi leadership wasn't impatient and short-sighted". German science was remarkable in spite of the Nazis, not because of them. Even the ties between occultism and the Nazi party are a lot more tenuous than most people realize.

That's not to say you can never play around with Nazism, it's a convenient shorthand for "unambiguous evil", but it's too often used lazily, relying on modern mythology more than anything else.
I heard that ironically enough the guys closest to a bomb other than were... the Japanese. And even then it was more like they were barking up the right tree than that they were likely to build anything in time to stop the Yankee hordes.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Evil Mastermind posted:

Just as an aside, this sentence sums up why I hate Lovecraftian horror. Alien space gods who don't know we're here while stomping on us are a lot less scary to me than alien space gods who are specifically gunning for us.

I had this whole thing I wrote up a while ago about how Jack Kirby's Darkseid and Terry Pratchett's Auditors were better cosmic horror than anything Lovecraft wrote.

That's my story, I'm just going to go over here now and be a total nerd.
I think this one's down to taste. There's a certain horror in realizing that your very senses and impressions are lying to you, while having a grand and glorious implacable foe is almost ennobling.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Man, this poo poo is dumber than the old Book of Madness Nephandi.

Those guys had the barabbus/widderslainte thing too. But they had three main divisions in their organization, or I guess you could say "types," since they would almost certainly not cooperate, though they might cordially stay out of each other's way.

You had the dudes who had hailed Satan and joined the armies of Hell, only like, the bad Hell, not the totally sweet awesome Hell where speed metal is playing all the time. These guys were probably the most comprehensible because they are basically Faust, but likely with less regrets.
You had the dudes who were in league with the Urge Wyrms from Werewolf, and indeed it was noted that other nephandi considered this kind of weird, like they'd converted to Werewolf Religion.
Then you had the K'laasha who were basically the bad guys from Silent Hill.

MonsieurChoc posted:

It's funny how the group of Nephandis who serve the Wyrm are called the Malfeans, while there are actual creatures of pure oblivion in the setting called Malfeans (from Wraith). They're also more frightening than the Wyrm by a wide margin.

When I first read Mage 2E so many years ago, I found the Nephandi really scary: they literally inverted their own souls in the search for total oblivion. And yet none of the various expanded takes on them over the years ever came close to being as evocative as their original two paragraph description. Sometimes more is less, I guess.
Yeah, the Neverborn were substantially more horrifying than the Wyrmbeasts, though of course it was a different sort of evocative gesture.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





In honor of this detailed inspection of White Wolf properties I have prepared a handy guide to World of Darkness game lines.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





DigitalRaven posted:

Rasputin was Russia's greatest love machine. It was a shame how he carried on.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Alien Rope Burn posted:

I would love to see an actual translation of In Nomine, instead of... what we got. It would no doubt still be flawed, but at least would be an interesting piece of cross-cultural satire. I ran it once or twice and mostly just remember the system math being completely hosed and even at a young age where I would play any old garbage I gave up on it based on the system being practically unrunnable.
On the other hand, if you got triple boxcars, Satan directly intervened.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





I expect the answer re: Brucato is that Brucato is a big fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but never saw Blade Runner, or at least never paid attention.

Why? Probably because he is a garbage man, and a clown.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





LatwPIAT posted:

The two most striking failures of the X20 line, to me, have been, firstly, they don't have a standardized how-to-roll template like the nWoD books have. If you look at any nWoD book, all rolls follow a standard template where dice, modifiers, costs, and effects are laid out in an organized and easy-to-find fashion. V20 doesn't have anything like this, so each Discipline description has to be finely read to figure out the difficulty, dice pool, etc. And secondly, they had the perfect opportunity to make sure all the games ran on the same base system to more easily facilitate crossovers, using content from one book in another, and not having to un-learn and re-learn the system every time you switch gamelines - and this was an opportunity they squandered.
I think it wasn't really planned as a "line" at all, and has only become one because there was somewhat more demand than expected.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





I always figured the low status thing in Mage and Werewolf wasn't meant to be institutional abuse so much as a framing of "you're starting in a place where the default story involves working your way up." Not necessarily the worst default assumption, albeit perhaps needing a side note of "and to represent an adept/fostern/whatever, add 30 BP".

Of course, for vampires, it is institutionalized abusive shitwork, curable only by embracing the true nature of the night and eating your elders.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Kavak posted:

You ever read the Vampire the Requiem source book Damnation City? Same thing- fantastic city-building tools on the crunch side, B vs. D on the fluff.
It's weird in a way, because even just the basic "toolkit" and setting stuff in most of these games have the potential to allow for interesting and complex characters and events and poo poo, without requiring you to start inserting inexplicable chosen ones or cosmic destinies. Or like, additional bonus ones. Instead you get B vs. D.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





I think the "permanent quintessence" was because you just needed to hang out at a Node for a while to refill a number of Quintessence points equal to your Avatar rating. Like, that just happened, maybe you had to make an easy meditation check. If you wanted MORE than that you had to start taking from the Node's output.

There were a lot of mechanics that required you to buy up your Avatar background. It was unclear if you could do this after character creation or not.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





wiegieman posted:

Did the Mage guys ever figure out that the reason everyone plays Technocrats is all the others are absolutely insufferable?
Eh, this hasn't really been my experience - the everyone playing Technocrats, anyway.

"In this moment, I am euphoric. Not because of any phony Avatar's blessing, but because I am Enlightened by my own Science."

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Wow, that is total garbage. I remember earlier versions of Mage actually had to kind of deal with the thorny questions of "At most early-PC levels, you are going to be doing things in your paradigm pretty drat strictly, and take penalties if you try to just use the Force and push something through. If you don't know how to heal someone save with a vulgar effect, I guess you're eating paradox if you heal people outside of a Chantry." and "PCs of disparate paradigms will want to cooperate."

Foci were also usually used for specific spheres of magic... not just as a general slapdash for everything, anyway, at least broadly speaking. You also gradually got the ability to shift from "requires focus, penalty to do it without a focus" to "bonus to use it with a focus, default roll to do it ice cold" as your Arete got higher.

e: Also, wouldn't all stones be older than 1500 years old if you think about it? Outside of the immediate area of a volcano anyway.

Nessus fucked around with this message at 06:26 on Jan 16, 2016

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Does this mean that living in a post-scarcity socialist economy would give everyone extra CP for being Dead Broke...? Makes you think.

Wasn't there a sidebar in Reign of Steel about some kind of upgrade path for autonomous robots so, uh, I guess the robots reinvented capitalism for some reason?

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Alien Rope Burn posted:

Hm. A link or two across the blog, and:



Well as Jack Parsons teaches us, being involved in magical workings sure doesn't protect you from being a dumbass.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Count Chocula posted:

He's Destruction from Sandman, which I appreciate. In Nomine sounds cool if you want to play Supernatural/Preacher style ambiguous 90s angels.

And if I wanted to be REALLY pretentious about M20, I could claim that the slow discarding of Paradigm mirrors you/your character's understanding that all religions and traditions are one, man, just different glosses on the same universal understanding. D&D and its ilk has the unexamined assumption that it's players know and care about math. Mage panders to those of us who instead studied comparative religion, which I appreciate.
I think with the latter case it's closer to "your understanding becomes so advanced that Darkseid must merely will-- and it is so! If he doesn't get hosed by the dice, or by Superman."

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





He blew a 6-6-6 on a car bomb? poo poo. I couldn't run In Nomine purely because I'd make every one of those an instant heavy metal album cover.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Josef bugman posted:

See maybe I am the grognard, but through looking at a lot of this stuff, why on earth did people want/ fall so in love with OWoD? I mean I am only in my 20's so missed a lot of the 90's by being way too young, but when was this stuff good?
Perhaps OWOD is in fact something only 90s kids will get.

I think Mage was an unusually thin reed being thinned even further by Brucato, so in a way you're seeing the worst outside of things like their specifically edge-lord shrink-wrapped material.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Rand Brittain posted:

"Our operatives aren't brainwashed that much" is not a compelling argument against GttT being satire.
One could argue, perhaps, that the Technocrats have the advantage of a quantified value of brainwashing. I'm going to suspect that there is some substantial consciousness alteration involved in most Traditional awakenings, too. Even an Orphan getting 'adopted' would have to learn certain things... and gain power thereby, of course.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Rand Brittain posted:

They don't actually say that, though? That's something people often attribute to them but it's not really part of the game's description of them.
I forget if it's in 1E or 2E but I distinctly recall reading about mages railing against Copernicus for ruining the great thing they had going before all this Reason poo poo got started. I believe it was specifically for heliocentrism, not for some hypothetical wizzard crime he did outside of the view of mundane history.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Terrible Opinions posted:

It doesn't explicitly say that, but they're still based on appeals to Romanticism, and just like real life Romanticism leaves many implicit problems floating around unaddressed. Either the Traditions have a solution to the god-king problem that they aren't telling the class or they don't think the wizard god-king s a problem.
It seems entirely reasonable to me, and it's not like I feel the various fictional teams of wizards and vampires need to have a rationally considered plan and proposal for the reordering of society for the greater benefit of Joe NPC in order to have a positive or heroic role.

HOWEVER, by making it such an explicit part of the Technocracy's pitch, I think you'd have to have a nod at it, even if that nod is "Yeah, you're full of poo poo, and also running water was invented four thousand years ago. Rather unreasonable of you to act like you've got the patent, don't you think?"

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Alien Rope Burn posted:

Also bear in mind Mage-under-Brucato, at least, has a lot of attacks on modernism as an engine that grinds souls under its boot and reduces you to "Liquid In, Liquid Out". It's not hard to take that as the party line for the Traditions, because if not them, who else? But Mage: the Ascension as a line is fantastically inconsistent and you can read it to support whatever preconceived notions you have, of course.
Perhaps the same could be said of all religions.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Rand Brittain posted:

Speaking of good-natured things, I kind of abandoned my Chuubo F&F because nobody seemed to be reading it. I wonder if anybody has any advice on what I could do to make a review more punchy?
Post more, to be frank. (I also hosed out on the two I was trying to do, RIP me). I don't remember seeing it, though an abortive pbp Chuubo got me to actually dig through it and it's pretty cool!

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





It also helps if the work is bad, offensive or strange because otherwise it's just a walkthrough of a good system. It seems like the main issue you could take with Chuubo is the prolix writing style, but that's half the charm, it seems.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





I don't think 1s take away successes in the 20th edition rolling system. I do forget if it's "more 1s than successes" or "no successes, and any 1s" - not sure how those would break down mathwise.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Simian_Prime posted:

This is how I feel the Traditions in M:tAs would have phrased their worldview if written properly. The Technocracy's point was "we took the credit for invented indoor plumbing and vaccines, what have YOU done for humanity?", the Traditions' response should have been "we're trying to bring back the world where no one gets sick* ever again."

*or poops
A key tract in the war for the consensus:

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Rand Brittain posted:

The thing is, if Zeus is still around (if I recall correctly Uriel got him), there's only one Zeus (because he killed all the others), but there's going to be a lot of Pikachu all sharing the power of the Pikachu-dreams. In order to ascend to godhood a given Pikachu ethereal would have to dispose of all his rivals before evolving into God-Raichu.

Jenna did the Ethereal Player's Guide and it's kind of like Nobilis before there was Nobilis. A very hungry Nobilis.
There may be thousands of Pikachu... but how many Mudkip?

So how does In Nomine deal with righteous paganism and stuff anyway? I mean I gather they're doing this dreamscape chaos magick stuff for the Old Gods, but what about current religions that are polytheistic or could be read as such? Are Buddhism and Hindu traditions just not touched on? It seems that you could argue that most theologies could be accomodated on the theory that angels and demons were misunderstood as gods and... demons.

Nessus fucked around with this message at 04:11 on Jan 21, 2016

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Song of Euphoria.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Mors Rattus posted:

Yeah, outside the part where the writers seem to treat BDSM as on the same level as pedophilia or rape, this is a fairly cromulent writeup of Lust as a horrible demonic Word. Congrats, writers, you succeeded! You made Lust horrifying!

It's just, why would you ever want to use it in a game?
It's the 90s. That's why!

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





Punting posted:

Invoking Lilith and/or Lucifer in the context of a role-playing is pretty much giving into special snowflake-ism from the get-go, though, so that's not exactly a big surprise.
I assume any statblock for Lucifer would permit him to be challenged only in the realms of legal argumentation (with great difficulty) or musical performance (slightly more attainable). Anything else is contrary to the lore.

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Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

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





PantsOptional posted:

I haven't played NBA, but having read the Dracula Dossier I can barely imagine confronting him even after you've done all that.
I forgot the acronym for the game under review and thought for a shining moment about having to confront Dracula on the b-ball court.

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