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Mage: the Awakening Second Edition

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Curator

In case you hadn't noticed, Mage the Awakening Second Edition is now available through DriveThru.

Read it. It has so many changes from First Edition that even Skeloric, if he were still here, would have found the book unputdownable.

Edited by Libra

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Wow! Long time no see, Libra!

Skeloric... I hadn't heard that name in years... I feel old and young again at the same time. Isn't that weird?

The hallowed halls of Shadow N Essence. Good times.

Finally and on topic, yes! Mage 2nd edition is a work of genius, praised be DaveB and his crew of mystery-obsessed writers. I'm reading it right now, nodding to myself every few paragraphs and suppressing childish giggles of pure joy. It's that good!

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Curator

They have been hitting the mark pretty consistently since the Strix Chronicle was re-released as Vampire: the Requiem Second Edition, and the God-Machine Chronicle was reissued as The World of Darkness Second Edition and, later, The Chronicles of Darkness.

I thought that Demon: the Descent was awesome, until they released Beast: the Primordial: but with this book, they reached an altogether higher level of awesomeness.

They retooled the entire magic section. No more "Coincidental" or "Vulgar" magic, Paradox has teeth, the Seers are included as playable characters if not the heroes, and it all fits together so magnificently. I just love this new Mage to bits.

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Reading it myself, I just love what I see.
Everything seems more fleshed out, specially the merits and things like Magic Armor, it seems a pleasure to play. 

Never played the CofD, so it might take a while to get used to conditions, tilt and the like, but with some practice it might work alright.

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So, what have everyone's experiences with Awakening 2nd been so far? I'll be hnonest, I find the new Magic System a tad overwhelming...

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Curator

I agree. There is A LOT to go through. Here's what I got on my first run through.

For one thing, every mage now can do Mage Sight automatically - it's like some constant, a Supernal lens through which they all see the world. Mage Sight now has three depths - Peripheral, Active, and Focused (and that last one is like Cyclops' eye beams: everybody can notice it), and it's used to unravel Mysteries, and there's some stuff about that, too - designing them, setting their difficulty (Opacity) and so on.

Then everybody can potentially summon Supernal beings, so every mage can do that Faustian summoning thing.

Soul Stones, Demesnes, High Speech, they can all do that, cool, check. About the same as what they could do before.

Then there's the magic and the spellcasting. Oh ye gods ... so much new stuff. What's this Praxes thing? What's this Reach thing? Where's the Vulgar / Coincidental thing? What's this Attainments thing? and so on.

Gamers always need a Session Zero to establish their characters; I think we need a Session -1 before that, to familiarise ourselves with the magic systems.

Edited by Libra

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Curator

I think p. 112 explains it, but not that well. From my first read through:-

- Praxes are hard-baked spells, that you study and use enough that they are like your signature

- You get a free one for every Gnosis

- You can buy more with Arcane Experience

- You have to be able to cast the spell as an Improvised Spell first before you can claim it as a Praxis (so no buying 3-dot Matter if you can only cast Matter at 2 dots).

And it looks like the benefits are:-

- If it involves Common or Inferior Arcana, you don't have to spend Mana for the Arcana

- Exceptional Success on three successes rather than five.

So it looks like you could and should hold off on picking Praxes the moment you gain Gnosis, and leave the slots empty till you find a spell you really like casting. You can cast the spell improvised, learn it as a Rote, and learn it as a Praxis, and apparently Rotes and Praxes have different benefits somehow. Rotes have very powerful benefits (p. 112 again).

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Okay, that makes sense... I love the book, I love the game, but sometimes it feels like it was intentionally written to be as hard to comprehend as possible... ;)

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Curator
1 minute ago, Infernal Teddy said:

Okay, that makes sense... I love the book, I love the game, but sometimes it feels like it was intentionally written to be as hard to comprehend as possible... ;)

As if you need to be Awakened to comprehend it ... :D

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Something like that, yeah. I think I would have given up without the summary in the back of the book. 1st edition was so much easier...

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Curator

1st Ed was certainly easier.

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Procurator

I literally can barely read the pdf. I had to put it down.

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Which is a pity, but it really needs a translation guide ;)

 

It's the first time WW/OP have released a game called Mage that makes me go "meh"...

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Procurator

Banishers are awesome though.

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Curator
On 9/15/2017 at 10:07 PM, Saint Michael said:

I literally can barely read the pdf. I had to put it down.

The PDF is multilayered. I found out recently that you can open up a column on the left of the PDF reader (which might have to be on a laptop, because the Adobe reader on laptops doesn't seem to have this option), and click on an icon that looks like three sheets of paper stacked on one another.

This gives you four options which you can toggle on or off - Foreground Images, Background Images, Background, and Text. Turning off all but text will allow you to enjoy reading the text on what has suddenly (and almost magically) become a very plain book. You could even turn off all the options, and the entire book just becomes blank, as if the text were invisible, or switch off just the text and enjoy looking at the pictures and marvel at the book which apparently would have no content in it ...

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Procurator

*wing hugs Libra* That helps a lot! Thank you! ^^

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