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Bebop Cola

The Masquerade today...

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So, back in 2010 I made a thread showing a concert in Japan that purportedly featured a hologram as the "performer."

Obviously, things have progressed in the past seven years. Recently news broke of researchers at the University of Washington have succeeded in using machine learning to creating lip-synced video from separate audio, producing an artificial video of someone speaking. For the research, they used former president Obama as there was plenty of video footage to use for the machine to work with and learn. Still, this is pretty big stuff in terms of video manipulation, both for legitimate and illegitimate purposes.

So, oWoD used to suggest the death of the Masquerade as a result of the ubiquity of smartphones and quality cameras in everyone's pocket. Now we have technology emerging where video footage that appears to be of one of the more difficult things to fake, someone speaking, can be artificially created.

Is the Masquerade truly doomed? ;)

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3 minutes ago, Bebop Cola said:

Is the Masquerade truly doomed? ;)

In a true sense, while the Masquerade would have "worked" during the previous centuries to the 20th century but all honesty though, The entire problem with the whole Masquerade concept that it's hard to keep a large scale secret for so long that's eventually going to crack.

Of course 5th edition is going to address this in a similar manner while the ideas are interesting but the execution though is rather...forced and lack luster, as in the resurrection of Inquisition 2.0. and cities are now localized as in Kindred are now locked into one city because it would be TPK if they try to move to another city like getting on a airplane. I think 5th edition here is trying to copy 1st edition Requiem it seems.

Don't get me wrong, while I do like the idea of the Inquisition 2.0. but what I don't like is the "forced localization or TPK" though since there should be more varied responses to humanity's reaction to vampirism.

Anyways, I think there has to be a better way to address the aspect that the Masquerade is doomed in today's world due to technology than 5th edition puts out.

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Donor

I honestly haven't looked at 5th edition yet, so I can speak to what they're doing with it there. I'll dig into it when I get a chance.

EDIT:
Just looked over the pre-alpha playtest materials linked on the Onyx Path forums, and I'm not immediately seeing anything on the Masquerade and "TPK" (not sure what you're referring to there, at the moment).

I'll admit that I haven't really been following the 5th edition stuff at all, but pre-alpha is pretty early to be forming too many solid conclusions regarding that mechanic. Is it being discussed in greater detail somewhere else?

Edited by Bebop Cola

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14 minutes ago, Bebop Cola said:

I honestly haven't looked at 5th edition yet, so I can speak to what they're doing with it there. I'll dig into it when I get a chance.

EDIT:
Just looked over the pre-alpha playtest materials linked on the Onyx Path forums, and I'm not immediately seeing anything on the Masquerade and "TPK" (not sure what you're referring to there, at the moment).

I'll admit that I haven't really been following the 5th edition stuff at all, but pre-alpha is pretty early to be forming too many solid conclusions regarding that mechanic. Is it being discussed in greater detail somewhere else?

I just remember seeing something about TPKs in some other forum but I don't exactly remember where, I think the details are scattered though and I'm only saying what I've been hearing or reading about it so far from what my memory goes.

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Isn't that part of the dread, though? Knowing that eventually its going to get out like it did before? Knowing that eventually the Masquerade is doomed to fail - and what is likely to happen when it does? 

Sure, you can spread the word that the viral video of you doing whatever was a fake. But what if the wrong people saw it before it was taken down? What's the Prince/Archbishop/whatever going to do to you, even if they succeed in covering it all up? What if the Inquisition saw it or some crowbar-wielding nut who believes all those conspiracy theories on the Internet? 

The Masquerade has always been rather fragile protection - but now its paper thin. And that should be part of the tension of the game. 

For example, take a look at the season finale of iZombie this year - the zombies have been living under something of a masquerade, several times have tread very close to being revealed, and one group of them finally says "Screw it". They launch a plan to turn as many people into zombies as they can (these zombies are rational as long as they can regularly feed on brains, not your typical shamblers). As this launches, they reveal themselves to the world and basically take over the city of Seattle. So now everybody knows there are zombies, but no one knows what end result of this will be. The zombies are hoping they will be protected by the normal humans' fear that the zombie virus will spread - but Seattle could just as easily be nuked off the map.

And not all zombies are really on board with this group - many of them still really like their human neighbors and are pissed that, now that they 've been outed, those people no longer want to be around them. Of course, there still is the problem of where to get enough brains to keep that many zombies from freaking out too.  Should be an interesting story to say the least. 

Edited by Random Avenger

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