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Luxifer

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About Luxifer

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  • Birthday 10/22/1981

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  1. Eidolon

    After a number of years this is finally entering the stage of completion!
  2. I remember you had a fantastic pdf of your Promethean fanwork with refinements & transmutations. Unfortunately I lost my copy when my hard-drive crashed. I was just wondering if you could link or send me a copy as the old link has expired. My direct email is glamourweaver@yahoo.com

    Hope to hear from you!

  3. Dreams of Delirium?? Where are you??

    It's no longer available as I want to use my original content for something non WW related.
  4. nWod Redux

    This post was the result of me playing around with some of the basic concepts of the nWoD settings, premised around the big three. These aren't really designed to go anywhere, but was more an exercise to mess around with some of the parts of the setting that didn't sit well with me into things I really liked. To begin with, I am going to outline my ground rules for the universe that should set the maxims for operations of games. Embrace Eurocentrism: Simple as that, we are dealing with myths that are of European origin, but have some analogues around the world. For the most part, I am going to assume a Western audience, and shape the myths of these entities in accordance with Western culture. I am not going to presume I can create some kind of mythic global construct. No monomyths: Corollary to the above. There is no overarching explanation of everything. There is no top-down rule for existence. There are a multitude of (often competing) explanations of reality, the nature of things. The virtue of being supernatural should not give an avenue to a complete picture. Products of civilisation: All of these stories are fundamentally about being human by contrast to being a monster. In order to construct this perspective relevantly, there needs to be an emphasis on the creatures' relationships to human civilisation. This means there must be some model for why multiple groups of the same type would create shadow-societies within the eaves of a city. Equivalent models. I have roughly taken the original 5 x 5 splat models, and implemented a number of lessons learned from some of the subsequent miniature lines. This model is going to be applied to the big three lines. Origin: All lines will have 5 inherent splats, and have a variational sub-splat option that tweaks the core premise (drawn from Changeling Kiths). This replaces most of the prestige splats, and brings all of their power levels down to the subtle tweaks of changeling. Mythos: All lines will have 5 mythoi. This replaces the conventional 5 x social/political splats. Instead, these 5 mythoi are fundamental ontologies that dramatically shape a character's outlook. They are systems of knowledge, faith and identity. All of these must be of ancient origin, and tie closely into European myths, but also provide its constituents a model for understanding their monstrous nature and how this interacts with civilisation. Each mythoi bestows upon their adherents mystical privileges. Membership is mostly optional, but abstention creates significant ostracism. Clique: Social groupings replace the usual prestige classes. Using the tiered system learned in hunter. These social groups represent vast collectives who come together to achieve social/political aims. They may be global, regional, or simply local in nature. Membership is entirely optional, but socially and politically disadvantageous. Vampire: the Requiem Premise In Requiem, we see very much a continuance of the status quo from the standard game. I think that the way Requiem explores the role of vampires, why they create shadow societies and their relationship to humanity is very well explored. I don't see any need to overhaul that. One of the changes I would intimate is that vampirism as understood in the context of Requiem has a European origin, and has spread with the expansion of European power across the globe. There have been several significant waves of expansion of vampirism across the globe consequential to human expansion (each representing a peak of vampiric civilisation): the Roman Empire (the Camarilla), destroyed by the fall of the Roman Empire and the dark ages; the age of European Imperialism reaching its peak in the 17th and 18th centuries (the Conseil des Anciens): only to be disrupted by the Spring of Nations in 1848, and brought to a complete collapse with the World Wars). The final wave represents the vast expansion of global corporate and private power, representing subtle cultural empires. During the Cold War, there was something of a reflection where the Western shadow Empires were in conflict with the Soviet shadow empires (a major sectarian split), which is currently resolving itself into the domination of Western cultural empires. Origins: Clans Clans remain an inborn aspect of vampirism inflicted upon the vampire upon the First Embrace. Clans are bound together by a corruption of the blood, each specific clan is changed upon Vitae infusing their dying bodies. Additionally, specific families and lines of clans have gathered together in houses. These are lineages of vampire bound together by ties of blood that run deeper than clan. Unlike bloodlines, which get an extra discipline, the Houses would probably only gain a small advantage or trick of the blood. Houses are signifiers of vampiric aristocracy, as they are indicative of good traditional breeding. Daeva: The Daeva are those embraced in passion. Those whose blood fills them with a craving for the life they once left behind. They are a victim of vice and carnality, finding their blood rushing quickly into their flesh. One of the best known Houses of the Daeva are the Toreador, those who spin their passions into a creative endeavour. Gangrel: When the blood calls to these, a feral voice fills there head. A primal predator they call only the Beast that makes them savage and cunning. They are victims of some primal urge, finding many of the trappings of civilization to be so much dross. One of the best known Houses of Gangrel are the Remans, a pedigree of nomads who claimed descent from Rome having rejected the trappings of civilization even then. Mekhet: The Mekhet are those without breath, without touch or imprint. Their blood is very thin, and they are fading from the world, leaving only whispers and spider traces in their wake. They are victims of their own shadow, falling far from the light of day. One of the best known Houses of Mekhet are the Alucinor who are said to be able to fade into dreams. Nosferatu: The Nosferatu are those corrupted by the embrace, whose flesh, and persona are twisted and rendered inhuman through the process. They are victims of grotesquerie to remind all who see them of their monstrous nature. One of the most infamous Houses of the Nosferatu are the Baddacelli, savage creatures of the darkness that have become monsters even to Kindred. Ventrue: The Ventrue are those forged out of pride. Those who feel that their blood has chosen them as a matter of pedigree, and infusing them with a sense of entitlement. They are victims of their detachment, finding it harder to understand what they have left behind. Perhaps the most notorious House of the Venture are the degenerate Malkavians, whose detachment has gifted them with mad insight. Mythos: Covenants Covenants are no longer overarching political motifs, but rather they are more like religions, or mythologies. They are cultural frameworks that vampires tell each other about the nature and being of the Requiem. These are profoundly important to a Kindred’s requiem as it gives them perspective about the nature of vampirism, and their relationship to humanity. In many cases, these ideas have been adopted from the existing Covenants from the Requiem core book, but augmented with ideas found in Mythologies. The Cainanite Sect: Vampirism is a curse inflicted upon humanity by the God of the covenant. Whereas the Fall of Eden was the original sin of man, dooming them to a mortal life, the second great sin was committed by Cain when he committed the first murder. Such a wanton act over the destruction of life meant damnation for Cain, and just as original sin is passed on in life by forefathers, the second sin is passed on through the embrace in death. As such, the Cainanites concern themselves with the nature of sin and damnation. The Circle of the Crone: To be a vampire is to be an acolyte of ancient blood gods, worshipped by humanity and demanding tribute. Whether it was Mithra, Aeshma, Athtar, or Turan, they all had blood cults dedicated to them. The most powerful of these being the Crone, a figure found in many places of the world, who symbolizes undeath and rebirth. From her comes the blessing of vampirism and its sacred duty. Those who adhere to the Circle concern themselves with pagan matters of life and death. The Dragon’s Brood: Stories from around the world speak of a serpent or wurm bringing darkness and corruption to mortals. From the serpent of Eden, to Apep of ancient Egypt, or the Leviathan of the waters and Jörmungandr. These are the dragons, mythic creatures reigning during the time of the terrible lizards. Only a few survived, and their venom was delivered into human blood, turning them into predators of darkness, chaos, and corruption. Though some choose to identify themselves with depiction of the devil, they know it to be simply symbolic of older myths. They know themselves to be apex predators of the night, tinged with the blood of the serpent. The Hollow Ones: Human beings have long feared the darkness. The hollow know that the darkness itself is hungry. It is an abyss from beyond the pale of death that craves the warmth of the living. Death may be a powerful staying force, but the primitive fears of darkness, death, and savagery have given this darkness an ability to touch and animate that very fear within them. Something of a goetic notion, in that it is kind of an inner demon that this preternatural darkness uses to consume the person from the inside out. So the workings of the inner mysteries are important to this group, understanding the role of the inner demons that plague people. The Sanguine Mystery: Blood rites have a long history in ancient humanity. The act of sacrifice (especially human) being amongst the most potent of their practices. The nature of this covenant is that it is believed that vampirism to be a result of these practices, whether it was Elizabeth of Bathory, Vlad Tepes, or Caligula; the consecration of blood has catalyzed their change into something more powerful. The exploration of this mystery, as well as a sort of alchemy and cultivation of blood are obviously important to this tradition. For these kindred, the study and exaltation of blood itself is their chief concern. Cliques: Caucuses Vampires, being highly political and social creatures, organize themselves into Caucuses. Each represents a special interest group, a political faction, or conspiracy that brings vampires together for a common agenda. Some of these Caucuses are global in their reach, such as the Invictus, who believe in breeding an indomitable aristocratic class of vampires, or the Lancea Sanctum who see Longinus as a vampiric prophet, who preach a doctrine of Sin Eating. Some might be more regional in their scope, such as the Brujah, being a matriarchal sect of vampiric witches in Central America, or the Ordo Dracul¸ a school of philosopher Kindred in Eastern Europe seeking transcendence of the vampiric condition. Others might be local causes, formed to respond to purely local issues. Such as the Obstructionist Army, who are a cell of vampiric sabotage artists and terrorists keen on bringing down the tyrannical institutions of the local Invictus. Powers: Disciplines Vampires have access to disciplines, abilities granted to them through unnatural manipulations of their Vitae. There are thirteen disciplines in total, three of them physical, 10 of them mystical. The three physical disciplines are common to all vampires, while the 10 mystical are considered affinity only to one or two of the clans. Animalism: The art of manipulating and controlling beasts. (Gangrel and Nosferatu) Auspex: The gifts of preternatural sensitivity. (Daeva and Mekhet) Dominate: The gifts of supernatural force of will and mental domination. (Ventrue) Equilibrium: The gifts of balance and movement, and even levitation. (Daeva and Gangrel) Harrowing: The powers of enervation and corruption. (Nosferatu and Ventrue) Majesty: The powers of supernatural charisma and guile. (Daeva) Nightmare: The powers of terror and inducing fear. (Nosferatu) Obfuscate: The art of concealment and fading from sight. (Mekhet and Nosferatu) Protean: The supernatural arts of shapeshifting and transformation. (Gangrel) Quiescence: The powers to induce silence, sleep and stillness. (Mekhet) [ b]Celerity: Powers of supernatural dexterity and speed. Resilience: Powers of preternatural resistance and endurance. Vigor: Powers of supernatural strength and might. Ritual Magic: Mysteries Each of the Covenants has access to various mysteries learned through their studies of their mythologies and culture. They are secret rites and abilities taught only to the devoted of their Covenant. Blood Alchemy: Infusions, distillations, and alchemical tinctures learned from the study of Vitae, particular to the Sanguine Mysteries. Coils of the Dragon: The ability to instill the vampiric corpus with qualities of the dragon itself, making them into a greater predator of the night, studied by the Dragon’s Brood. Crúac: Death magic, and dark profane rituals of the Circle of the Crone. Oneirocritica: The study of dreams, madness, and the subtle realms of the psyche learned by the Hollow Ones. Theban Sorcery: The theurgies of the damned, unholy miracles gifted to them in their damnation learned by the Cainantites. Werewolf: the Forsaken Premise The premise of werewolf is about human incursion into the wilderness, and the increasing taming of the wild. Earth was once pristine, but has not been for a great many millennia. More than any other species, humanity has changed the face of the Earth, destroying natural habitats for greed, and power. As humanity encroached on the wilderness, and began destroying places of power, and the groves of the wild, something came back out. Since the rise of cities, the urban landscape has become home to an increasingly large number of species, each trying to find ways to adapt to the new urban jungle. Lycanthropy is just one of those species. This vital animal power that has found humanity to be a new host. This setting of werewolf is less about an eternal war with the spirit realm, but rather how creatures of a primal nature adapt themselves to civilization (or not). Instead of packs holding large swathes of pristine wilderness as their territory, the new tribes are finding themselves squashed together in large numbers in the confines of a city. So while there is certainly new opportunity and much in the way of food, the territories of the shifters jut against each other, and tensions run hot. The people of the tribes are engaged in a struggle of survival against each other, attempting to ensure that they can live, even if it is at the expense of their brethren. For them, the city represents one vast territory (filled with other predators they must also reckon with), with each pack forming individual enclaves. Yet, the people come together, and cannot help but feel a need to lay down the law of the jungle and declare their supremacy over the cityscape. Obviously, there have been some significant periods of history for this reflection. The bronze age being the first creation of cities and agricultural attempts to tame the wilderness. The second being the industrial era and the radical changes brought about by it. The final being the contemporary era where wilderness is virtually dwindling away. A different change I would make to the setting is that werewolves simply represent a very common type of protean, common to Europe and North America. This represents the fact that wolves are very successful and often apex predators in these ecologies. However, it is entirely possible for other apex predators to be represented through this protean existence. In places like Australia, wolves are entirely implausible, and may be more readily represented through dingoes or crocodile-like creatures. Origins: Castes When a human is infected by the primal voice, the urge of the wild, they are imprinted by the change. These imprints are called castes and reflect one of five primal archetypes, each being a primitive ideal of a mythic hero, which infuses them with a sense of duty and identity. Castes, by nature, endow their members with special privileges and sanctions. Each of them draws upon the duties of their caste for great effect. A caste can be further divided into Tattoos, marked visibly by ritual scarification of their troth. These are sacred vows and pledges that a member takes upon themselves to honor as part of their duties. Rahu: The seeker is driven to action and victory. Their virtue is glory, drawing strength from the protection of their community. Throughout history, the warrior has been changed from a hunter by the ways of war into a fierce soldier and militant figure, capable of great destruction. One of the most renowned tattoo of the Rahu are the Black Furies, women who have turned their martial prowess into a duty of vengeance for women-hood everywhere. Cahalith: The singer is driven to wonder and question. Their virtue is wisdom, drawing strength from the knowledge imparted to their community. Throughout history, the seeker has developed through traditions of scholarly lore, and the institutions of pedagogy, to produce academics, philosophers, and mystics. The most notorious of the Cahalith tattoos are the Prophets of the Voice, those who turn their insights into vision quests of the things to come. Elodoth: The ruler is driven to guide and lead. Their virtue is honour, drawing strength from the trust of their community. Throughout history, the leader has been governed by an emerging concept of law, justice, and patronage to become law-makers, sovereigns, and authorities, ensuring peace amongst their kind. One of the best known tattoos of the Elodoth are the Soothsayers, who have developed their sense so finely that they can taste the truth on people’s lips. Ithaeur: The healer is driven to reflect and mend. Their virtue is succor, draws strength from the wellbeing of their community. Throughout history, the healer has evolved from a simple tenderer of wounds into a medical savant and peacemakers. Their pulse quickens with a flush of liquidity, enabling them to adapt to strange situations and mediate discord until an equilibrium is restored. The best known Ithaeur tattoo are the Bone Dancers, who act as angels of mercy, delivering death when it would be the final compassionate act. Irraka: The crafter is driven to make and to build. Their virtue is cunning, drawing strength from innovation and arts of guile and ingenuity. Throughout history, the crafter has evolved from the maker of home and hearth into an artisan, a maker of invention and industry. While earth and metal lie deep in their bones, they are moved by the spinning of cogs, and the wonderful order of the material world. The most famous Irraka tattoo are the Iron Masters, who have become masters of human technology. Mythos: Tribes The myths of the Shifters speak of themselves as a people: one single nation of shifting creatures driven out of the wilderness into the urban jungle. However, there is no consensus on what it means to be the Tribe. There is no one single myth that explains the origins of lycanthropy, the change that imbues ordinary people into creatures of the wild. The Children of Arcadia: The Arcadians, or Chimera as they call themselves, see the primal urge as a force of nature itself, the very voice of the untamed wilderness rejecting humankind. Cities are often viewed as a type of parasite, plaguing the wild and draining it of its resources. In reaction, the wilderness sent a plague of its own, to inflict human beings with an unstable form. Thus they are the Chimera, creatures of a protean state, given to revelry, anarchism and eco-terrorism. The Hounds of God: The Hounds claim as cities rose upon the world, they became cesspits of corruption and decadence. The fall of Rome, Byzantium, and many other examples of modern corporate corruption are signs of humanity’s disgrace. Thus God chose to visit humanity with his judgment, transforming a number of people into his holy crusaders that they might destroy the evil at the heart of cities, and ensure that humanity is safeguarded from their excesses. The Silver Band: It is no accident that the myths of the wolf shifter are tied to the moon, for she is queen of the heavens, a goddess who once chose amongst the people of the Earth a cohort to be her bravest and most sacred guardians. They pledged a sacred troth to her and in turn she bequeathed them with the shifting nature of her own form. The Silver Band consider themselves a matriarchal society, whose members concern themselves with the practice of their lunar mysteries. The Shadow Speakers: The Speakers say that the world is animistic, that every single rock, tree and animal has in them a spirit. The shifters are those who are imbued with this spiritual force, and made into half-flesh, half-spirit. The gift of shifting is due to their halfling nature, and demands that werewolves cultivate harmony between the spiritual and material realms. The Wolf Coated: The Wolf Coated say that their shifting powers were stolen, the animalistic powers of wolves stolen by warriors of old to induce a great ferocity in their fighting. This theft angered the first wolf, whether the warg of Nordic myth, or lupa who was the she-wolf that suckled Rome, or the Wolf Star of the Pawnee. The wolf was a harbinger of death, and bound these mortals into their stolen skins; a curse that survives beyond death. They see their curse as a taint, and one that can only be cleansed through a demonstration of martial skill. Cliques: Enclaves Enclaves describe what a group of proteans do. Local Enclaves are nominally territorial concerns to do with a specific city. The Water Rats describe an enclave of like-minded rat proteans in Sydney who collectively care for the waters of its harbours. Regional Enclaves may concern themselves with broader resources that affect multiple cities, such as the Jaguar Warriors of the Brasilian Basin, who resort to sabotage to halt the onslaught of development into the jungles. Some have a global relevancy such as the Children of Gaia, who use the Gaian hypothesis to figure out a way to incorporate humanity back into the world's ecology, rather than be adverse to it. Powers: Brands Obviously, with there being no immediate spiritual overtones, Gifts can't be based on things given by spirits. Instead, brands are mystical scars that proteans can mark themselves with. In being marked, they are able to imbue its effect into their being, making it a natural extension of their primordial nature. None of the brands would allow the protean to affect the world around them, but can be used to enhance their own natural and preternatural abilities. Brandings would be directly related to the five virtues. Each of them describing a means of taming the primordial nature of their animal side, and channeling it into constructive means. The acquisition of the ranks of these would be achieved through endeavors, more like Apocalypse. Gift Lists that would translate well into Brands: Dominance, Evasion, Father Wolf, Insight, Inspiration, Knowledge, Rage, Stealth, & Strength. Ritual Magic: Rites Rites represent the mystical practices of the various tribes. Each would function like the means of a mystery cult, whose ritual and sacraments are not just performances of magic, but the sacred or profane expressions of that tribe's identity. [*]Benediction: Resting in the knowledge that they are the chosen warriors of God, the Hounds of God are infused with a righteous candor that wards them against the prevarications of evil they must surely uproot. [*]The Delirium: The Children of Arcadia carry with them a supernatural madness that tears down the forces of reason inside the mind. They are able to induce trances and fugues upon the mortal population, allowing them to alter perceptions and memories. [*]The Red Rage: A Berseker Rage that the Wolf Coated are known to practice. It allows them to unleash a furious savagery that endures beyond most physical limitations of other shifters. [*]Spirit’s Tongue: The Shadow Speakers are gifted with the spirit’s tongue, which lets them hear and communicate with the spirits of the Realm. Through this, they can forge alliances with powerful Totems, and perhaps even gain entry into the subtle realms of the spirit world. [*]Thessalan Songs: The witchcrafts of the moon as practiced by the Silver Band, which induce madness, and affect memory and secrets. They allow the people of the moon to draw down the strength of the moon she waxes and wanes. Mage: the Awakening Premise (a good portion of this was roughly inspired by mage: the dirty version) For mage, I'm mostly going to wholeheartedly borrow the Ascension War premise. Basically, a rational ordered technocracy versus mystical traditions. The premise of the game revolves around the capturing of the consensus. There are a number of significant historical developments, the first being the Hellenistic philosophical engagements and the spread of literature (which represent the predominance of greco-roman language to universalise magical experienced). The second being a very Sorcerer's Crusade style of Enlightenment, and the contemporary one being a widespread technocratic transhumanistic regime. Origins: Paths Paths represent a means of enlightenment, as in the foundational insight into the nature of magic, and how it works. In some respects, this describes the cause causans of magic. It is not a system of knowledge that can be changed or adapted. It is a profound epiphany that had fundamentally changed your experience of reality. Acanthus: The awakening of Acanthus is one that connects them to a subtle realm of dreaming. This may be seen as a universal consciousness, Akashic record, a skein of memes, or even a realm of platonic ideals. For Acanthus, magic comes from unrefined potentiality and made real through the presence of an observer/participant. Obrimos: The awakening of Obrimos is always about a deep connection to a divine source. This might be a god, or pantheon, or may even represent some infernal compact. It is something to tap into and direct. Mastigos: The awakening of Mastigos are ones of will. Magic is the expression of the mind over reality, a complete domination of the personal imago onto a malleable reality. This may be through a framework of psychism or of the will to power. The only limitation is what can be imagined, or conceived and applying that conviction over the external world. Moros: The awakening of the Moros gives them insight into a balance of creation and destruction. Magic is simply the balance to the natural state of chaos, entropy and destruction. Magic is simply the ability to be the focus of that balance and ensure that creation and destruction occur around you. Thyrsus: The awakening of Thyrsus tunes the mage into a vast system of interconnectivity. This might manifest itself as nature itself, or some other cosmic principle (such as a cosmic sea). The mage is an aware participant of this vastly complex web, and in doing so is able to shift its ebbs and flows. Mythos: Traditions A tradition represents a praxis of magical use. Each Tradition does not describe a cultural paradigm, but a means and method of controlling and directing magic. The intersection between a person's path and their tradition creates a vast variety of magic users. It should be understood that each tradition represents a convergence of praxes. Over the historical events of magical histories, the commonalities of practice have brought disparate groups together, forming more nuanced and complex paradigms. Alkhimia: Alkimia believes that magic can be achieved through natural philosophy and through the arts of transmutations. There are techniques and tools that enable the mage to imbue the vital essences of magic into their substantial works. Hermetics: Hermetics believes that magic can be achieved through ritual and mathematics. Magic operates according to a code and laws, which can be invoked through careful observation of crafts, and keys of knowledge. Through precise and technical replication, the effects of magic can be controlled. Sacrifium: The work of the Sacrement is to render the mundane into the magical. This is done through some kind of devotion, surrender, or sacrifice. Some part of the material or mundane is offered up to the magic and made anew. It may be done through ascetic or ecstatic practices, pure submission of faith, or the destruction or death of something vital. Somast: The Somast believe that the means of magic is within the body. The body is the product of the material world, and is the tool through which magic can be realised within the fallen. The techniques may include blood or sex practices, or even achieved through forms and motion. Thaumaturge: Magic is a work of wonder and providence. It is a thing that can only be invoked, and never truly mastered. The mage must be a thing of sympathy, harmony and a conduit between the source and the real world. Whether invocation through prayer, chants, verse or even meditations, a Thaumaturge performs a miracle. Cliques: Orders The Orders are secret societies spread across the world. They are tiered just like any other secret society, with the height of their tier relevant to the expanse of their scope and ambition. Purely local Orders likely concern themselves with local mysteries and cults. At regional levels, the secret societies may address a coherent aspect of culture in a region. At global levels, they are addressing profound philosophical ontologies that affect humanity.
  5. nWod Redux

    This post was the result of me playing around with some of the basic concepts of the nWoD settings, premised around the big three. These aren't really designed to go anywhere, but was more an exercise to mess around with some of the parts of the setting that didn't sit well with me into things I really liked. To begin with, I am going to outline my ground rules for the universe that should set the maxims for operations of games. Embrace Eurocentrism: Simple as that, we are dealing with myths that are of European origin, but have some analogues around the world. For the most part, I am going to assume a Western audience, and shape the myths of these entities in accordance with Western culture. I am not going to presume I can create some kind of mythic global construct. No monomyths: Corollary to the above. There is no overarching explanation of everything. There is no top-down rule for existence. There are a multitude of (often competing) explanations of reality, the nature of things. The virtue of being supernatural should not give an avenue to a complete picture. Products of civilisation: All of these stories are fundamentally about being human by contrast to being a monster. In order to construct this perspective relevantly, there needs to be an emphasis on the creatures' relationships to human civilisation. This means there must be some model for why multiple groups of the same type would create shadow-societies within the eaves of a city. Equivalent models. I have roughly taken the original 5 x 5 splat models, and implemented a number of lessons learned from some of the subsequent miniature lines. This model is going to be applied to the big three lines. Origin: All lines will have 5 inherent splats, and have a variational sub-splat option that tweaks the core premise (drawn from Changeling Kiths). This replaces most of the prestige splats, and brings all of their power levels down to the subtle tweaks of changeling. Mythos: All lines will have 5 mythoi. This replaces the conventional 5 x social/political splats. Instead, these 5 mythoi are fundamental ontologies that dramatically shape a character's outlook. They are systems of knowledge, faith and identity. All of these must be of ancient origin, and tie closely into European myths, but also provide its constituents a model for understanding their monstrous nature and how this interacts with civilisation. Each mythoi bestows upon their adherents mystical privileges. Membership is mostly optional, but abstention creates significant ostracism. Clique: Social groupings replace the usual prestige classes. Using the tiered system learned in hunter. These social groups represent vast collectives who come together to achieve social/political aims. They may be global, regional, or simply local in nature. Membership is entirely optional, but socially and politically disadvantageous. Vampire: the Requiem Premise In Requiem, we see very much a continuance of the status quo from the standard game. I think that the way Requiem explores the role of vampires, why they create shadow societies and their relationship to humanity is very well explored. I don't see any need to overhaul that. One of the changes I would intimate is that vampirism as understood in the context of Requiem has a European origin, and has spread with the expansion of European power across the globe. There have been several significant waves of expansion of vampirism across the globe consequential to human expansion (each representing a peak of vampiric civilisation): the Roman Empire (the Camarilla), destroyed by the fall of the Roman Empire and the dark ages; the age of European Imperialism reaching its peak in the 17th and 18th centuries (the Conseil des Anciens): only to be disrupted by the Spring of Nations in 1848, and brought to a complete collapse with the World Wars). The final wave represents the vast expansion of global corporate and private power, representing subtle cultural empires. During the Cold War, there was something of a reflection where the Western shadow Empires were in conflict with the Soviet shadow empires (a major sectarian split), which is currently resolving itself into the domination of Western cultural empires. Origins: Clans Clans remain an inborn aspect of vampirism inflicted upon the vampire upon the First Embrace. Clans are bound together by a corruption of the blood, each specific clan is changed upon Vitae infusing their dying bodies. Additionally, specific families and lines of clans have gathered together in houses. These are lineages of vampire bound together by ties of blood that run deeper than clan. Unlike bloodlines, which get an extra discipline, the Houses would probably only gain a small advantage or trick of the blood. Houses are signifiers of vampiric aristocracy, as they are indicative of good traditional breeding. Daeva: The Daeva are those embraced in passion. Those whose blood fills them with a craving for the life they once left behind. They are a victim of vice and carnality, finding their blood rushing quickly into their flesh. One of the best known Houses of the Daeva are the Toreador, those who spin their passions into a creative endeavour. Gangrel: When the blood calls to these, a feral voice fills there head. A primal predator they call only the Beast that makes them savage and cunning. They are victims of some primal urge, finding many of the trappings of civilization to be so much dross. One of the best known Houses of Gangrel are the Remans, a pedigree of nomads who claimed descent from Rome having rejected the trappings of civilization even then. Mekhet: The Mekhet are those without breath, without touch or imprint. Their blood is very thin, and they are fading from the world, leaving only whispers and spider traces in their wake. They are victims of their own shadow, falling far from the light of day. One of the best known Houses of Mekhet are the Alucinor who are said to be able to fade into dreams. Nosferatu: The Nosferatu are those corrupted by the embrace, whose flesh, and persona are twisted and rendered inhuman through the process. They are victims of grotesquerie to remind all who see them of their monstrous nature. One of the most infamous Houses of the Nosferatu are the Baddacelli, savage creatures of the darkness that have become monsters even to Kindred. Ventrue: The Ventrue are those forged out of pride. Those who feel that their blood has chosen them as a matter of pedigree, and infusing them with a sense of entitlement. They are victims of their detachment, finding it harder to understand what they have left behind. Perhaps the most notorious House of the Venture are the degenerate Malkavians, whose detachment has gifted them with mad insight. Mythos: Covenants Covenants are no longer overarching political motifs, but rather they are more like religions, or mythologies. They are cultural frameworks that vampires tell each other about the nature and being of the Requiem. These are profoundly important to a Kindred’s requiem as it gives them perspective about the nature of vampirism, and their relationship to humanity. In many cases, these ideas have been adopted from the existing Covenants from the Requiem core book, but augmented with ideas found in Mythologies. The Cainanite Sect: Vampirism is a curse inflicted upon humanity by the God of the covenant. Whereas the Fall of Eden was the original sin of man, dooming them to a mortal life, the second great sin was committed by Cain when he committed the first murder. Such a wanton act over the destruction of life meant damnation for Cain, and just as original sin is passed on in life by forefathers, the second sin is passed on through the embrace in death. As such, the Cainanites concern themselves with the nature of sin and damnation. The Circle of the Crone: To be a vampire is to be an acolyte of ancient blood gods, worshipped by humanity and demanding tribute. Whether it was Mithra, Aeshma, Athtar, or Turan, they all had blood cults dedicated to them. The most powerful of these being the Crone, a figure found in many places of the world, who symbolizes undeath and rebirth. From her comes the blessing of vampirism and its sacred duty. Those who adhere to the Circle concern themselves with pagan matters of life and death. The Dragon’s Brood: Stories from around the world speak of a serpent or wurm bringing darkness and corruption to mortals. From the serpent of Eden, to Apep of ancient Egypt, or the Leviathan of the waters and Jörmungandr. These are the dragons, mythic creatures reigning during the time of the terrible lizards. Only a few survived, and their venom was delivered into human blood, turning them into predators of darkness, chaos, and corruption. Though some choose to identify themselves with depiction of the devil, they know it to be simply symbolic of older myths. They know themselves to be apex predators of the night, tinged with the blood of the serpent. The Hollow Ones: Human beings have long feared the darkness. The hollow know that the darkness itself is hungry. It is an abyss from beyond the pale of death that craves the warmth of the living. Death may be a powerful staying force, but the primitive fears of darkness, death, and savagery have given this darkness an ability to touch and animate that very fear within them. Something of a goetic notion, in that it is kind of an inner demon that this preternatural darkness uses to consume the person from the inside out. So the workings of the inner mysteries are important to this group, understanding the role of the inner demons that plague people. The Sanguine Mystery: Blood rites have a long history in ancient humanity. The act of sacrifice (especially human) being amongst the most potent of their practices. The nature of this covenant is that it is believed that vampirism to be a result of these practices, whether it was Elizabeth of Bathory, Vlad Tepes, or Caligula; the consecration of blood has catalyzed their change into something more powerful. The exploration of this mystery, as well as a sort of alchemy and cultivation of blood are obviously important to this tradition. For these kindred, the study and exaltation of blood itself is their chief concern. Cliques: Caucuses Vampires, being highly political and social creatures, organize themselves into Caucuses. Each represents a special interest group, a political faction, or conspiracy that brings vampires together for a common agenda. Some of these Caucuses are global in their reach, such as the Invictus, who believe in breeding an indomitable aristocratic class of vampires, or the Lancea Sanctum who see Longinus as a vampiric prophet, who preach a doctrine of Sin Eating. Some might be more regional in their scope, such as the Brujah, being a matriarchal sect of vampiric witches in Central America, or the Ordo Dracul¸ a school of philosopher Kindred in Eastern Europe seeking transcendence of the vampiric condition. Others might be local causes, formed to respond to purely local issues. Such as the Obstructionist Army, who are a cell of vampiric sabotage artists and terrorists keen on bringing down the tyrannical institutions of the local Invictus. Powers: Disciplines Vampires have access to disciplines, abilities granted to them through unnatural manipulations of their Vitae. There are thirteen disciplines in total, three of them physical, 10 of them mystical. The three physical disciplines are common to all vampires, while the 10 mystical are considered affinity only to one or two of the clans. Animalism: The art of manipulating and controlling beasts. (Gangrel and Nosferatu) Auspex: The gifts of preternatural sensitivity. (Daeva and Mekhet) Dominate: The gifts of supernatural force of will and mental domination. (Ventrue) Equilibrium: The gifts of balance and movement, and even levitation. (Daeva and Gangrel) Harrowing: The powers of enervation and corruption. (Nosferatu and Ventrue) Majesty: The powers of supernatural charisma and guile. (Daeva) Nightmare: The powers of terror and inducing fear. (Nosferatu) Obfuscate: The art of concealment and fading from sight. (Mekhet and Nosferatu) Protean: The supernatural arts of shapeshifting and transformation. (Gangrel) Quiescence: The powers to induce silence, sleep and stillness. (Mekhet) Celerity: Powers of supernatural dexterity and speed. Resilience: Powers of preternatural resistance and endurance. Vigor: Powers of supernatural strength and might. Ritual Magic: Mysteries Each of the Covenants has access to various mysteries learned through their studies of their mythologies and culture. They are secret rites and abilities taught only to the devoted of their Covenant. Blood Alchemy: Infusions, distillations, and alchemical tinctures learned from the study of Vitae, particular to the Sanguine Mysteries. Coils of the Dragon: The ability to instill the vampiric corpus with qualities of the dragon itself, making them into a greater predator of the night, studied by the Dragon’s Brood. Crúac: Death magic, and dark profane rituals of the Circle of the Crone. Oneirocritica: The study of dreams, madness, and the subtle realms of the psyche learned by the Hollow Ones. Theban Sorcery: The theurgies of the damned, unholy miracles gifted to them in their damnation learned by the Cainantites. Werewolf: the Forsaken Premise The premise of werewolf is about human incursion into the wilderness, and the increasing taming of the wild. Earth was once pristine, but has not been for a great many millennia. More than any other species, humanity has changed the face of the Earth, destroying natural habitats for greed, and power. As humanity encroached on the wilderness, and began destroying places of power, and the groves of the wild, something came back out. Since the rise of cities, the urban landscape has become home to an increasingly large number of species, each trying to find ways to adapt to the new urban jungle. Lycanthropy is just one of those species. This vital animal power that has found humanity to be a new host. This setting of werewolf is less about an eternal war with the spirit realm, but rather how creatures of a primal nature adapt themselves to civilization (or not). Instead of packs holding large swathes of pristine wilderness as their territory, the new tribes are finding themselves squashed together in large numbers in the confines of a city. So while there is certainly new opportunity and much in the way of food, the territories of the shifters jut against each other, and tensions run hot. The people of the tribes are engaged in a struggle of survival against each other, attempting to ensure that they can live, even if it is at the expense of their brethren. For them, the city represents one vast territory (filled with other predators they must also reckon with), with each pack forming individual enclaves. Yet, the people come together, and cannot help but feel a need to lay down the law of the jungle and declare their supremacy over the cityscape. Obviously, there have been some significant periods of history for this reflection. The bronze age being the first creation of cities and agricultural attempts to tame the wilderness. The second being the industrial era and the radical changes brought about by it. The final being the contemporary era where wilderness is virtually dwindling away. A different change I would make to the setting is that werewolves simply represent a very common type of protean, common to Europe and North America. This represents the fact that wolves are very successful and often apex predators in these ecologies. However, it is entirely possible for other apex predators to be represented through this protean existence. In places like Australia, wolves are entirely implausible, and may be more readily represented through dingoes or crocodile-like creatures. Origins: Castes When a human is infected by the primal voice, the urge of the wild, they are imprinted by the change. These imprints are called castes and reflect one of five primal archetypes, each being a primitive ideal of a mythic hero, which infuses them with a sense of duty and identity. Castes, by nature, endow their members with special privileges and sanctions. Each of them draws upon the duties of their caste for great effect. A caste can be further divided into Tattoos, marked visibly by ritual scarification of their troth. These are sacred vows and pledges that a member takes upon themselves to honor as part of their duties. Rahu: The seeker is driven to action and victory. Their virtue is glory, drawing strength from the protection of their community. Throughout history, the warrior has been changed from a hunter by the ways of war into a fierce soldier and militant figure, capable of great destruction. One of the most renowned tattoo of the Rahu are the Black Furies, women who have turned their martial prowess into a duty of vengeance for women-hood everywhere. Cahalith: The singer is driven to wonder and question. Their virtue is wisdom, drawing strength from the knowledge imparted to their community. Throughout history, the seeker has developed through traditions of scholarly lore, and the institutions of pedagogy, to produce academics, philosophers, and mystics. The most notorious of the Cahalith tattoos are the Prophets of the Voice, those who turn their insights into vision quests of the things to come. Elodoth: The ruler is driven to guide and lead. Their virtue is honour, drawing strength from the trust of their community. Throughout history, the leader has been governed by an emerging concept of law, justice, and patronage to become law-makers, sovereigns, and authorities, ensuring peace amongst their kind. One of the best known tattoos of the Elodoth are the Soothsayers, who have developed their sense so finely that they can taste the truth on people’s lips. Ithaeur: The healer is driven to reflect and mend. Their virtue is succor, draws strength from the wellbeing of their community. Throughout history, the healer has evolved from a simple tenderer of wounds into a medical savant and peacemakers. Their pulse quickens with a flush of liquidity, enabling them to adapt to strange situations and mediate discord until an equilibrium is restored. The best known Ithaeur tattoo are the Bone Dancers, who act as angels of mercy, delivering death when it would be the final compassionate act. Irraka: The crafter is driven to make and to build. Their virtue is cunning, drawing strength from innovation and arts of guile and ingenuity. Throughout history, the crafter has evolved from the maker of home and hearth into an artisan, a maker of invention and industry. While earth and metal lie deep in their bones, they are moved by the spinning of cogs, and the wonderful order of the material world. The most famous Irraka tattoo are the Iron Masters, who have become masters of human technology. Mythos: Tribes The myths of the Shifters speak of themselves as a people: one single nation of shifting creatures driven out of the wilderness into the urban jungle. However, there is no consensus on what it means to be the Tribe. There is no one single myth that explains the origins of lycanthropy, the change that imbues ordinary people into creatures of the wild. [*]The Children of Arcadia: The Arcadians, or Chimera as they call themselves, see the primal urge as a force of nature itself, the very voice of the untamed wilderness rejecting humankind. Cities are often viewed as a type of parasite, plaguing the wild and draining it of its resources. In reaction, the wilderness sent a plague of its own, to inflict human beings with an unstable form. Thus they are the Chimera, creatures of a protean state, given to revelry, anarchism and eco-terrorism. [*]The Hounds of God: The Hounds claim as cities rose upon the world, they became cesspits of corruption and decadence. The fall of Rome, Byzantium, and many other examples of modern corporate corruption are signs of humanity’s disgrace. Thus God chose to visit humanity with his judgment, transforming a number of people into his holy crusaders that they might destroy the evil at the heart of cities, and ensure that humanity is safeguarded from their excesses. [*]The Silver Band: It is no accident that the myths of the wolf shifter are tied to the moon, for she is queen of the heavens, a goddess who once chose amongst the people of the Earth a cohort to be her bravest and most sacred guardians. They pledged a sacred troth to her and in turn she bequeathed them with the shifting nature of her own form. The Silver Band consider themselves a matriarchal society, whose members concern themselves with the practice of their lunar mysteries. [*]The Shadow Speakers: The Speakers say that the world is animistic, that every single rock, tree and animal has in them a spirit. The shifters are those who are imbued with this spiritual force, and made into half-flesh, half-spirit. The gift of shifting is due to their halfling nature, and demands that werewolves cultivate harmony between the spiritual and material realms. [*]The Wolf Coated: The Wolf Coated say that their shifting powers were stolen, the animalistic powers of wolves stolen by warriors of old to induce a great ferocity in their fighting. This theft angered the first wolf, whether the warg of Nordic myth, or lupa who was the she-wolf that suckled Rome, or the Wolf Star of the Pawnee. The wolf was a harbinger of death, and bound these mortals into their stolen skins; a curse that survives beyond death. They see their curse as a taint, and one that can only be cleansed through a demonstration of martial skill. Cliques: Enclaves Enclaves describe what a group of proteans do. Local Enclaves are nominally territorial concerns to do with a specific city. The Water Rats describe an enclave of like-minded rat proteans in Sydney who collectively care for the waters of its harbours. Regional Enclaves may concern themselves with broader resources that affect multiple cities, such as the Jaguar Warriors of the Brasilian Basin, who resort to sabotage to halt the onslaught of development into the jungles. Some have a global relevancy such as the Children of Gaia, who use the Gaian hypothesis to figure out a way to incorporate humanity back into the world's ecology, rather than be adverse to it. Powers: Brands Obviously, with there being no immediate spiritual overtones, Gifts can't be based on things given by spirits. Instead, brands are mystical scars that proteans can mark themselves with. In being marked, they are able to imbue its effect into their being, making it a natural extension of their primordial nature. None of the brands would allow the protean to affect the world around them, but can be used to enhance their own natural and preternatural abilities. Brandings would be directly related to the five virtues. Each of them describing a means of taming the primordial nature of their animal side, and channeling it into constructive means. The acquisition of the ranks of these would be achieved through endeavors, more like Apocalypse. Gift Lists that would translate well into Brands: Dominance, Evasion, Father Wolf, Insight, Inspiration, Knowledge, Rage, Stealth, & Strength. Ritual Magic: Rites Rites represent the mystical practices of the various tribes. Each would function like the means of a mystery cult, whose ritual and sacraments are not just performances of magic, but the sacred or profane expressions of that tribe's identity. [*]Benediction: Resting in the knowledge that they are the chosen warriors of God, the Hounds of God are infused with a righteous candor that wards them against the prevarications of evil they must surely uproot. [*]The Delirium: The Children of Arcadia carry with them a supernatural madness that tears down the forces of reason inside the mind. They are able to induce trances and fugues upon the mortal population, allowing them to alter perceptions and memories. [*]The Red Rage: A Berseker Rage that the Wolf Coated are known to practice. It allows them to unleash a furious savagery that endures beyond most physical limitations of other shifters. [*]Spirit’s Tongue: The Shadow Speakers are gifted with the spirit’s tongue, which lets them hear and communicate with the spirits of the Realm. Through this, they can forge alliances with powerful Totems, and perhaps even gain entry into the subtle realms of the spirit world. [*]Thessalan Songs: The witchcrafts of the moon as practiced by the Silver Band, which induce madness, and affect memory and secrets. They allow the people of the moon to draw down the strength of the moon she waxes and wanes. Mage: the Awakening Premise (a good portion of this was roughly inspired by mage: the dirty version) For mage, I'm mostly going to wholeheartedly borrow the Ascension War premise. Basically, a rational ordered technocracy versus mystical traditions. The premise of the game revolves around the capturing of the consensus. There are a number of significant historical developments, the first being the Hellenistic philosophical engagements and the spread of literature (which represent the predominance of greco-roman language to universalise magical experienced). The second being a very Sorcerer's Crusade style of Enlightenment, and the contemporary one being a widespread technocratic transhumanistic regime. Origins: Paths Paths represent a means of enlightenment, as in the foundational insight into the nature of magic, and how it works. In some respects, this describes the cause causans of magic. It is not a system of knowledge that can be changed or adapted. It is a profound epiphany that had fundamentally changed your experience of reality. [*]Acanthus: The awakening of Acanthus is one that connects them to a subtle realm of dreaming. This may be seen as a universal consciousness, Akashic record, a skein of memes, or even a realm of platonic ideals. For Acanthus, magic comes from unrefined potentiality and made real through the presence of an observer/participant. [*]Obrimos: The awakening of Obrimos is always about a deep connection to a divine source. This might be a god, or pantheon, or may even represent some infernal compact. It is something to tap into and direct. [*]Mastigos: The awakening of Mastigos are ones of will. Magic is the expression of the mind over reality, a complete domination of the personal imago onto a malleable reality. This may be through a framework of psychism or of the will to power. The only limitation is what can be imagined, or conceived and applying that conviction over the external world. [*]Moros: The awakening of the Moros gives them insight into a balance of creation and destruction. Magic is simply the balance to the natural state of chaos, entropy and destruction. Magic is simply the ability to be the focus of that balance and ensure that creation and destruction occur around you. [*]Thyrsus: The awakening of Thyrsus tunes the mage into a vast system of interconnectivity. This might manifest itself as nature itself, or some other cosmic principle (such as a cosmic sea). The mage is an aware participant of this vastly complex web, and in doing so is able to shift its ebbs and flows. Mythos: Traditions A tradition represents a praxis of magical use. Each Tradition does not describe a cultural paradigm, but a means and method of controlling and directing magic. The intersection between a person's path and their tradition creates a vast variety of magic users. It should be understood that each tradition represents a convergence of praxes. Over the historical events of magical histories, the commonalities of practice have brought disparate groups together, forming more nuanced and complex paradigms. [*]Alkhimia: Alkimia believes that magic can be achieved through natural philosophy and through the arts of transmutations. There are techniques and tools that enable the mage to imbue the vital essences of magic into their substantial works. [*]Hermetics: Hermetics believes that magic can be achieved through ritual and mathematics. Magic operates according to a code and laws, which can be invoked through careful observation of crafts, and keys of knowledge. Through precise and technical replication, the effects of magic can be controlled. [*]Sacrifium: The work of the Sacrement is to render the mundane into the magical. This is done through some kind of devotion, surrender, or sacrifice. Some part of the material or mundane is offered up to the magic and made anew. It may be done through ascetic or ecstatic practices, pure submission of faith, or the destruction or death of something vital. [*]Somast: The Somast believe that the means of magic is within the body. The body is the product of the material world, and is the tool through which magic can be realised within the fallen. The techniques may include blood or sex practices, or even achieved through forms and motion. [*]Thaumaturge: Magic is a work of wonder and providence. It is a thing that can only be invoked, and never truly mastered. The mage must be a thing of sympathy, harmony and a conduit between the source and the real world. Whether invocation through prayer, chants, verse or even meditations, a Thaumaturge performs a miracle. Cliques: Orders The Orders are secret societies spread across the world. They are tiered just like any other secret society, with the height of their tier relevant to the expanse of their scope and ambition. Purely local Orders likely concern themselves with local mysteries and cults. At regional levels, the secret societies may address a coherent aspect of culture in a region. At global levels, they are addressing profound philosophical ontologies that affect humanity.
  6. Battle of the Contracts

    Contracts of the Den, Winter Masques
  7. New Devotion

    Feel free to comment on this, whether you think it's reasonably balanced or not. Keeping in mind, this would be for a LARP. WILL TO POWER (AUSPEX •••••, DOMINATE •••••) The Malkovians have long been fascinated experimentors with the limits of the psyche. Their proficiency with both Auspex and Dominate allow them to understand the subtle and complex manipulations of the mind, even beyond the normal understandings of psychology. In their most refined states, Auspex and Dominate enable the Kindred to commit something of their psyche into a distant vessel, either another mortal coil or the breath of the ghost. In essence, this Devotion has the unique ability to allow the Kindred to project more completely into their subject, simultaneously pouring both his ghost and mind into the vessel. The Kindred's vital essence is now encapsulated in the subject's being. It allows the Kindred to extend the will of his power from the subject, allowing him to channel some functions of their psyche through their host, granting the minimal use of some of the Kindred's Disciplines by proxy. Not all subjects are capable hosts of the Kindred's power. It requires a certain synergy between master and vessel that cannot be found naturally. For the subject to be an adequate vessel, they must be a ghoul of the Kindred, under a full vinculum. The use of personal ghouls are essential, as they have developed a natural affinity to submitting to the will of their Kindred masters and their psyches are naturally alligned to the purpose of their master. It is also essential that the subject contain some measure of the Kindred's own Vitae in order to resonate that vital spark of undead animation carried by the beast. Cost: 1 Vitae in addition to the Willpower expended with Possession (and 1 Willpower to activate any Disciplines by proxy thereafter). Test Pool: There is no test pool for this Devotion. It is activated as an adjunct to Possession. To activate it, as part of the Possessing act, the Kindred must expend a point of Vitae to congeal a ghost of breath, which must then be exhaled into the subject's own mouth. Action: Instant This enhanced possession means that the aura of the Kindred is stamped more firmly on the subject. Anyone who conducts aura perception or other means of psychic testing upon the subject will see the aura as if it were the Kindred's own. It will not look muted as it might normally under possession. Further, not all powers of the Damned are communicable. Only a few are applicable here as this is an extension of the psyche only. The Kindred can only employ powers that are affinity to him. Secondly, the abilities are limited in that no power above the third dot can be employed. Lastly, only powers that have no activation cost can be channeled by Proxy. The reasoning for this is twofold, firstly is that any powers requiring Vitae cannot be channeled through the distant connection. Secondly, activating a psychic power through the connection requires the expenditure of a point of Willpower. This means that only those powers that have no innate cost can be utilised as the ability to spend only one Willpower in the same turn precludes the use of Disciplines that already require it. Will to Power lasts for the duration of the Possession. This power costs 30 experience points to learn.
  8. Triple Kiths, Anyone?

    I make it special condition... my players are currently dealing with the fact that they're encountering a fae every week that if they tell a story to they gain a point of wyrd... they also must do a clarity check.
  9. Dark Desires

    So, I found the explanation of Spring Court philosophy to be a little too naff for my liking. Spring Court is also generally considered to be the weakest chapter of Lord of Summer, but YMMV. So, because I have always had a vision of spring and desire that is greatly different from this, I thought I'd present my vision here. This is a first draft of the document, so feel free to give *constructive* feedback. Dark Desires
  10. Changeling: The Earthbound/Delerium?

    An Exerpt... Genre Eidolon is an attempt at a new genre. In constructing the various elements of the Realm and putting it together there were many aspects of it that seemed to touch on extant genres, but seemed to have its own special niche. The Realm of Eidolon is a pastiche. It has the high and low fantasy of classical faerie tales. It has elements of neo-Victorian culture and alternative technology. It has dark and furtive horrors that lay waiting in the dark. I call it Dreamscape Opera. Dreams are very important in the Realm. They are so significantly caught up in what story is about that it can sometimes seem synonymous. In the Realm, all things touch upon the dream, and a good deal many more are immersed into it. It has a dreamscape quality to it, in that it is fantastic and wondrous; filled with the beauty of a phantasmagoria. In stories of the Realm there is no aesthetic that is too bizarre, too outlandish or wild. Colours are often exotic and hypnotic, though they be muted or vivid. Music echoes with deep timbre and powerful resonance. The Realm has sprung forth from a dream, and so by a dream-like order all the details and fabrications are rich with nuance and meaning. That is to say, the subject of our attention, anyone's attention, becomes invested with meaning. The Realm works according to certain contrivances of fate and story. That means that objects, events, and occurrences that occur in any reality shaped by mere causality might stretch belief. However, here in the Realm the heroes arrive just in the nick of time, because time can very literally flow according to the speed of plot (as a necessity, any references to something being literal in this work is of course a deliberate double pun, if it's written it must be true). Lastly, and most importantly, it is opera! There should be exposition, there should be rising and falling action, there should be climaxes and conclusions. It is important to consider that the stories of Eidolon focus on the characters, their evolution and the progression of their drama. Each individual is a paragon of humanity, they are Actors in both senses of the word. They are the chosen of destiny, of fate to have the Realm revolve around them. They have a greater significance in the Realm by sheer virtue of the fact that we're telling their stories; as telling someone's story gives them power. So they are Actors because they have agency, they are all puissant to varying scales. They are also Actors because at heart they are performers. Stories are enriched by drama, conflict and complex characters. Those Actors who give the best performance, the most memorable fodder for stories will find their star rising. The best and brightest of the Actors are the ones who, quite simply, know their stagecraft as well as their statecraft. There is a reason why much of the terminology in the Realm exploits the two meanings of words common between politics and performance. The theatre of power, the parlement, acts of law, masquerades and opera.
  11. Geist has a name....

    Seconded or whatever. I am thoroughly disappointed with the subname.
  12. San Fransisco

    Can I make a recommendation and suggest you scale the numbers back. I run a freehold with 50 NPC changelings. It's quite a lot of work. I find it's better to have a small cast of well developed characters than a large panopoly of shapeless nameless hoardes. You might be able to create a sense of great politics and society, but table tops are far better suited to the intimate relationships with the NPCs.
  13. Sneak Peak at Dancers in the Dusk

    As per White Wolf's release schedule: http://secure1.white-wolf.com/catalog/upcoming.php Dancers in the Dusk 03/18/2009
  14. Ideas for "Shadows of" books!

    Cthonic Sea? I don't think that means what you think it does... That's like saying Earth Sea.
  15. Sourced from: http://www.gametrademagazine.com/public/de...=79369&ssd= GTM #108 - Changeling the Lost: Dancers in the Dusk — “Tangled Fates” by White Wolf Publishing FAERIE FATE: The world in which a new changeling finds itself thrown into is complex and filled with dangers. Despite this, most of the Lost comfort themselves with the knowledge that at least they are free. With no Keepers to control their actions, they can make their own choices and decide their own destinies. Unfortunately, this perception is not entirely true,DancersDuskas many changeling elders are quick to remind them. The Courts follow rules, if none so complex as those forced on them in the past. They must learn the unwritten laws of the Wyrd, and the pathways of magic. And they must contend with Fate, which pushes and prods at changelings to live their lives in accordance with its strange patterns. CURSES: As a general term, a curse is any power which is set in place for the purpose of negatively affecting someone or something. Intent is key with a curse. They are directly focused to bring harm, bad luck, illness, or vulnerability to a particular person. The same power can be used as a curse in one situation and in another be used for other means. Thus Withering Glare is a curse, if used to blight someone's crops or sicken their animals, but not if used on an unowned tree or animal out in the wilderness. Likewise, Unmaker's Destructive Gaze is a curse if used to cause difficulties for the owner or wielder of the item, but it is not a curse if used on an item or object which the individual casting the curse does not know or is not trying to bring harm to (for example, if used to cause a lock to fail so that a changeling can enter a building). The intention must be to punish or inflict harm upon the object or creature's owner. As well, curses are a personal matter. They are almost always a reaction to an insult, injury or affront (perceived or real). While they can be used capriciously, they are rarely cast for no reason, and must be focused on a particular individual (or that individual's personal property), rather than an area affect. Likewise, powers that enhance one individual are not considered curses against another, even if that enhancement is then used to harm the other party. A curse can be a Contract that impairs someone's ability (like Fickle Fate or Faces in the Water), makes them more vulnerable to negativity (such as Creeping Dread), or damages their wealth, health (mental or physical) or possessions (like Touch of the Workman's Wrath or Theft of Reason). Contracts which do direct physical damage (in the form of dealing bashing, lethal or aggravated damage) to a person, such as The Lord's Dread Gaze or Brother to the Ague, are not considered curses; cursing is a more subtle art. While Contracts may be the simplest and most direct way to curse someone (a fact that Witchtooth Ogres take full advantage of), it is not the only means. Curses can be delivered in the form of Nightmares, which sap their target of the ability to regain Willpower through sleep), goblin fruit or oddments (such as Walking Gertrude) or artifacts like the Cursing Box (pp. 146--147, Rites of Spring). A more subtle form of curse is invoked when an individual is tricked, coerced or trapped into a pledge designed specifically to make him violate the Task. Using pledges as a curse puts the responsibility for not activating the curse in the hands of the cursed individual — a moral loophole that curse wielders use to absolve themselves of responsibility for the harm which befalls those they bind in this manner. offensively by virtually ensuring that the other individual or individuals in the pledge will violate the task of the agreement and thus trigger the sanction. A pledge which is made specifically with the intent of the other individualArt2breaking it is sometimes known as a malediction, although mechanically they are identical to other pledges.Some manage to do this with normal pledges, by using mundane or supernatural means to push their adversary harder and harder towards violating that pledge. After entering into a seemingly beneficial pledge with their target, they might use Contracts to manipulate his emotions to make him not care about violating the terms of the vow, or to actively desire to take actions which would break the oath. Alternately, they might take advantage of a known weakness in the other individual's psyche — a phobia or addiction, perhaps, or just a predilection for a certain object, person or behavior — to use entirely mundane means to push, pull or pester their target into breaking his pledge.Those who frequently use such tactics, of course, are often looked upon with distaste by the Lost. Even more so are those who go a step further, tricking their victims into pledges they had no intention of swearing (see Unwitting Pledges, below.) This tactic is sometimes seen as the purview of the True Fae, especially when targeted towards those inexperienced in pledges or uneducated in the way of fae magic. However, in some circumstances, the end is viewed as justifying the means. When the target is an oathbreaker, a threat to Lost society, or when the curse is used in self defense against an obvious threat, few would argue the ethics of using any means available to deal with the situation. MALEDICTIONS: Ideally, a pledge is a Wyrdsworn agreement between two knowing individuals to accomplish some positive end. Both are bolstered by their pact, and neither enters into the bargain with the intention of breaking the deal. However, desperate times often produce desperate results, and the Wyrd cares nothing for the intention behind or morality of the pledges it binds. Over the centuries, some Lost have taken advantage of this fact, developing a variety of pledges which can be used offensively by virtually ensuring that the other individual or individuals in the pledge will violate the task of the agreement and thus trigger the sanction. A pledge which is made specifically with the intent of the other individual breaking it is sometimes known as a malediction, although mechanically they are identical to other pledges. Some manage to do this with normal pledges, by using mundane or supernatural means to push their adversary harder and harder towards violating that pledge. After entering into a seemingly beneficial pledge with their target, they might use Contracts to manipulate his emotions to make him not care about violating the terms of the vow, or to actively desire to take actions which would break the oath. Alternately, they might take advantage of a known weakness in the other individual's psyche — a phobia or addiction, perhaps, or just a predilection for a certain object, person or behavior — to use entirely mundane means to push, pull or pester their target into breaking his pledge. Those who frequently use such tactics, of course, are often looked upon with distaste by the Lost. Even more so are those who go a step further, tricking their victims into pledges they had no intention of swearing (see Unwitting Pledges, below.) This tactic is sometimes seen as the purview of the True Fae, especially when targeted towards those inexperienced in pledges or uneducated in the way of fae magic. However, in some circumstances, the end is viewed as justifying the means. When the target is an oathbreaker, a threat to Lost society, or when the curse is used in self defense against an obvious threat, few would argue the ethics of using any means available to deal with the situation. VARIANT MECHANIC: UNWITTING PLEDGES Tricking, bullying or sweettalking someone into an unwitting pledge is an ageless Fae tradition. While many oaths are sworn of free will, with forethought and planning on all parts, not all are. Some are "caught" into pledges, having their freely given words or agreements which were not intended as a pledge turned into one. Others are actually tricked or manipulated into giving an agreement (which is then Wyrdbound), even though it was not their intention to do so. Changelings can use their connection with the Wyrd to turn any agreement into a pledge. From a formal promise ("I swear, I will never tell you a lie") to a casual agreement ("Sure, I'll pick you up at the airport"), any commitment that is recognized by the Wyrd, through one or more parties involved in it having the Wyrd advantage, can be forged into a pledge. All it takes is the application of Willpower by someone involved. Most Lost (and those who know about them from direct experience or legend) are extremely aware of making any promises, commitments or agreements — and rightfully so. While human society may see oathbreaking to be a serious matter only in extremelyArt1formal instances (marriage vows, legal contracts and the like), the Wyrd cares nothing for "circumstances beyond your control." If you have promised to tend a Woodblood's plants while she is on vacation, and she locks your promise into a pledge, the Wyrd does not care if her house burns down while you're away or if you are taken into an alternate dimension where your demonic overlords won't let you loose to tend to your gardening. A broken pledge is a broken pledge. Some Lost eschew the use of anything other than formal pledges. Most often the newly returned, these changelings believe that to lock another (be they fae or mortal) into a casual promise with the Wyrd is a form of treachery only suited to the True Fae. Others, however, embrace this ability as a vital tool. When there is little to nothing one can trust, the ability to bind others to their spoken word provides a basis for beginning to trust. It prevents treachery, betrayal and deception — or at least invokes a price for them. Binding humans into secrecy is a pledge few Lost would disagree with. If a few more complain if that pledge includes servitude or support, they really aren't arguing against the morality of manipulating others into pledges, but rather are splitting hairs about the nature of "proper" pledges versus unethical ones. * Dice Pool: Manipulation + Persuasion + Wyrd vs. the target's Resolve + Occult + Wyrd * Action: Instant (costs 1 Willpower to initiate the roll which is then used to fuel the pledge or wasted) Unwitting pledges must be a part of a conversation that could be manipulated into the target saying something that could be construed as a promise. The aggressor must determine the constraints of the pledge before making the attempt to trick the target into it. The target's resistance is reflexive, and they do not suffer an unskilled dice penalty for the Occult skill. The power of the unwitting pledge is limited by the net number of the aggressor's successes. No aspect (positive or negative) of the pledge may be greater than the number of net successes achieved by the aggressor. With a single success, the aggressor is limited to Lesser sanctions, durations, boons and tasks (no greater than 1 or --1 in severity.) With two successes, Medial pledge elements can be added, and with 3 or more, Greater aspects can be enforced. Unwitting pledges count towards the total number of pledges the changelings involved can bear at any given point, just as unforced ones do. In addition to the standard Persuasion modifiers (p. 83, World of Darkness Rulebook), Storytellers can impose the following pledgespecific helps and hindrances to this challenge. * Hindrances: Target is aware of the existence of pledges (--2), for each level of each aspect (sanction, duration, boon or task) of the pledge that is above Lesser (--1 cumulative), Pledgesmith Merit (--1 per level of Merit of target; see Rites of Spring, p. 94) * Help: Pledgesmith Merit (+1 per level of Merit of aggressor; see Rites of Spring, p. 94), target is an ensorcelled human (+1), target is intoxicated or otherwise influenced to be more pliant to suggestion (+1) Roll Results: * Dramatic Failure: The target automatically knows that she was being talked into some sort of promise against her will. Any additional attempts to manipulate this target into an unwitting pledge within the next 24 hours automatically fail. * Failure: The unwitting pledge does not "take" and the target may reflexively roll Wits + Occult + Wyrd to determine if they sense the fact that they were being manipulated into an unwilling agreement. Regardless of whether the target is aware of the trick or not, any additional attempts to manipulate this target into an unwitting pledge within the next 24 hours suffer an automatic --4 penalty (cumulative with successive attempts and failures over any 24 hour period.) * Success: The aggressor has managed to bribe, bully, sweet talk or intimidate his target into unintentionally making an agreement that he then binds into to an immediately activated pledge. A side result of this entrapment is that the target becomes aware, at least in general, of what she has "agreed" to do or not do, and the punishment if she should break the pledge. She is not, however, aware that she has been tricked into it, and believes she swore of her own volition. * Exceptional Success: No additional benefit results from an exceptional success beyond an increased threshold for the power of the pledge gained from the net successes rolled. Note: Using this method to trick or force a supernatural into a pledge is a level 5 Clarity sin. At the Storyteller's discretion, exceptionally dangerous, restrictive or longlasting pledges may be level 4, 3 or even 2 Clarity sins, depending on how closely the Lost's behavior and demands resemble the means and methods utilized by the Others. Forcing a mundane human (who are inherently more vulnerable to such predations) is automatically one step lower Clarity sin (thus a minimum of level 4). Trapping defenseless humans into unwitting pledges is the purview of the True Fae. Aeolian attempts to bind an unwitting human into a Reaper's Pledge. She spends a point of willpower and strikes up a conversation with the target. Her starting dice pool is 13 (Manipulation + Persuasion + Wyrd). The human's starting resistance is 3 (Wits 3, no Occult, no Power Stat). Aeolian is further hampered by the Medial Endeavour Task (--1) and the Medial Glamour Boon (--1), although all other aspects of the pledge are Lesser and thus impose no hindrances. Aeolian receives a +3 bonus for her three levels of the Pledgesmith Merit, and she has both intoxicated and ensorcelled the human (+1 for each) for a total of +5 bonus dice. Thus the Storyteller rolls 13 dice for Aeolian's attempt (13--3--2+5) and achieves 4 successes. This is more than the 2 she would need to achieve the Reaper's Pledge, as no aspect of the pledge is greater than Medial, and the human is bound in the pledge. Aeolian must now make a Clarity check versus a sin level set by her Storyteller (but at least a level 4 sin). PLEDGE CURSES: Pledge curses vary drastically, depending on the purpose of the individuals involved. A Lost who wants to bring about a foe's demise would, of course, use a far different pledge than one who simply wants to make her enemy eat crow or teach him to treat the less fortunate with a bit more respect. The following pledge curses are merely some wide ranging examples of some of the vast variety of pledge curses which exist, and serve as a demonstration of how such a curse might be worded, the mechanics thereof, and a sample situation which a Lost might use them in. They are not intended, by any means, to be the seen as the only pledge curses that exist, or even the only circumstances which the given curses might be used in. Like any other pledge, a malediction must be balanced; its tasks, boons, sanctions and duration values all equaling out into a null sum. As the intention of most is to bind the "victim" into a pledge which he will eventually break, it is not unusual for the curser to use a Year and a Day duration or even a decade. This is long enough to ensure that she has sufficient time to manipulate the victim into breaking the oath, or to give him enough proverbial rope to hang himself with. This also allows for a greater sanction than a shorter duration would allow for, all other factors being equal, and lengthens the period of the sanction's effect to a year and a day for standard curse sanctions as well. The True Fae are known to trick their victims into swearing lifelong maledictions, but few Lost feel that it is worth the great expenditure of Willpower to do so. If a Lost cannot be tricked, pushed or tempted into breaking his oath in 10 years, chances are he may have the resolve to continue abiding by it for a lifetime. Similarly, it is common for maledictions to use Greater tasks as well. While you could expend your effort into tricking someone into saying they would show up to a movie and then arrange for them not to do it, the potential "backlash" you could impose upon them for so minor an oathbreaking is fairly slim. Since it would be very difficult to lead them into making such a trivial promise on their True Name or a vital emblem, most such curses are lowlevel vows, and designed just to teach the cursed individual a little lesson about keeping his word (or casually making oaths). *****
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