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What do I need to know / have to run Fair Folk antagonists?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Leetsepeak View Post
    I think the one difficulty I've run into with them is that their charms are costed in a different way from Spirits, and it seems better to try to cost them like Exalted charms. Not the same effects obviously, but yeah.
    Spirits have really huge Essence pools compared to Exalted/Raksha, and get higher mote costs as a result of that.


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    • #17
      Originally posted by Robert Vance View Post
      Spirits have really huge Essence pools compared to Exalted/Raksha, and get higher mote costs as a result of that.
      Do you have any suggested metric or rule of thumb for the increase? Obviously you get big powers that will cost something like 10 motes, but for the little one that might do something like grant an auto-success and reroll 1s, and that might cost 3 for an Exalt/Raksha, should you generally do something like double the cost? 3m becomes 6m with an additional cost potentially?


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      • #18
        I would like to quote the Twilight PC in the group I'm storytelling for:

        "For those born of Creation, we are who we are, regardless of how we view ourselves or what others think of us. For the Fair Folk, their perception is their reality."

        I built up a massive threat for my players and revealed to them that the Fair Folk's form was the whimpering heart of a child. He wove fear into his fantasy---and fear is what he became. I enjoy Fair Folk because they allow for some weird and alien creative freedom. They put the fantasy into "fantasy game".


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        • #19
          Originally posted by Leetsepeak View Post

          Do you have any suggested metric or rule of thumb for the increase? Obviously you get big powers that will cost something like 10 motes, but for the little one that might do something like grant an auto-success and reroll 1s, and that might cost 3 for an Exalt/Raksha, should you generally do something like double the cost? 3m becomes 6m with an additional cost potentially?
          Cheap and dirty method: look at the difference between the mote pools as a ratio, multiply the cost by that.

          This won't work perfectly, but it's unlikely to break anything if you're running the game.


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          • #20
            Originally posted by Robert Vance View Post
            Spirits have really huge Essence pools compared to Exalted/Raksha, and get higher mote costs as a result of that.
            I'm curious about the design choices behind this. Is there a reason for why it's so much higher, but their charms are worth more? Is it so they run out of Essence faster? / Can't get back as much in combat?

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            • #21
              Originally posted by PraxisCat View Post
              I'm curious about the design choices behind this. Is there a reason for why it's so much higher, but their charms are worth more? Is it so they run out of Essence faster? / Can't get back as much in combat?
              Spirits have the added complication of materialization costs. A blood ape guard chilling outside a fortress will have their full mote pool; a blood ape that materializes out of the shadows to ambush you has half of that. Increasing mote pool size and Charm cost for them gives you more knobs to tweak in balancing that dichotomy.


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              • #22
                Originally posted by Robert Vance View Post
                Spirits have the added complication of materialization costs. A blood ape guard chilling outside a fortress will have their full mote pool; a blood ape that materializes out of the shadows to ambush you has half of that. Increasing mote pool size and Charm cost for them gives you more knobs to tweak in balancing that dichotomy.
                If I remember right, places like Yu-Shan and Spirit Sanctums don't have the material/immaterial divide (or they do but everyone there gets in the same state so it doesn't matter). If so, this makes the spirits a lot more dangerous if you challenge them in their Sanctums.

                Also, Elementals are naturally material (and most can't dematerialize). How does that affect their charm cost?


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                • #23
                  Originally posted by danelsan View Post
                  If I remember right, places like Yu-Shan and Spirit Sanctums don't have the material/immaterial divide (or they do but everyone there gets in the same state so it doesn't matter). If so, this makes the spirits a lot more dangerous if you challenge them in their Sanctums.
                  As it probably should be.

                  Also, Elementals are naturally material (and most can't dematerialize). How does that affect their charm cost?
                  They still have higher mote costs (and lots of non-mote costs, like Initiative and Willpower). It's the giant mote pool that necessitates the higher costs, not just being able to dematerialize.

                  I guess we could have given elementals different mote pool calculations than the rest of the spirits, but I doubt that would have been worth the hink of complexity.


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                  • #24
                    Although for a lot of spirits, I would assume that their attitude regarding materialization is more concerned with how being immaterial conveniences escape rather than inconveniencing fighting, and that confronting them in their sanctums is more like cornering a rabbit in its burrow.


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                    • #25
                      Mixing and matching some of the stuff from the sample fae antagonists in EX3 should be good enough a start, specially if one also takes a look at the Sorcery chapter, with the Scarred By Nightmares Initiation and its rituals & merits...

                      Also, the mortal antagonist QCs may also provide inspiration on iconic types of character a Fae might steal imagery from to cloth its identity upon.
                      Last edited by Baaldam; 12-18-2016, 10:00 PM.

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                      • #26
                        Hey, Vance, while you're here: was Alveua's Plague of Shining Insects Charm supposed to have the Eclipse keyword? It lists a PC-appropriate dice pool.

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                        • #27
                          Thanks for all the imput, really appreciated!

                          Right now, I'm going for an Essence 5 Fair Folk, using the best of both the Lorelei and Cataphract statblocks (with a +1 here and there). I'm looking at the different charms and merits from the various antagonists, but I think I'll have to adjust the costs for much of them.

                          What do you think of the following effect:
                          Persistence of Ideas: As long as there remains a non-trivial character present on the scene with a major or defining Tie towards the Fair Folk (positive or negative), its Incapacitated health level can never be filled. Any damage that would fill its Incapacitated health level is instead converted to Withering Damage (or simply ignored if not in combat).

                          It would basically serve as the "invincibility clause" of the bad guy. Keeping in mind that it is intended for a Quick Character, and not for player use, do you think it should have a cost to its effects (like a charm) or is it ok as it is (as a merit/trait, or permanent charm)?

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                          • #28
                            Well, personally i would ask myself first how do "the best of both the Lorelei and Cataphract" mesh concept-wise into this particular Fae Noble - one does not have to be "the best at everything" to be noteworthy. In fact finding a colorful niche for it can be most helpful in directing the mind when picking or adapting stuff for ideas.

                            Is the noble obsessed with seduction AND combat? How so? What is it gender (supposing it doesnt flip between them like certain lunars or spirits)? Is it some lady of fiery ice that will accept only one capable of battling her as an equal for companion and lover? A rake that steals princes-brides from their altars starting jilted paramours or husabands into the road of vengeance and war, with the armies of shamed nations on their heels? A mentoring figure that teaches pupils in the hard & soft ways of the world in more forms than one expects? Something else altogether?

                            What have you in mind about its personality, goals or motives to interact with the circle of exalts?

                            On the "invincibility clause", well, im not really a fan of that kind of trick, specially for an "opening big bad" of its kind.
                            Dont make him recurring on
                            principle, let the game and pc reactions decide this in time.
                            That said, the fact someone must care about the noble, positively or negatively, for the charm to work is a nice built-in weakness. If the heroes dont care either way, its literally a goner. Loved or hated it, this noble needs those around it to feel strongly in some way, any way, about it, what can certainly offer ideas on characterization.

                            Also, what kind of minions and resources can it count upon? Is it some Lone Wolf-Knight with a loyal Companion-Cub, a Dark Overlord with hosts of goblinoids at its beck & call? A bright-eyed Monster Hunter followed only by a troupe of unique familiars it gathered in battles, hunts and travels? A god-king (or goddess-queen) with a multitude of fanatical worshippers () devoted to chronicling its battles, romances and rivalries in prolonged disputes of dogma, canon, jihad & whatnot?

                            It crossed my mind the subject hasnt been touched upon so far.
                            Last edited by Baaldam; 12-23-2016, 04:27 PM.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Baaldam View Post
                              Well, personally i would ask myself first how do "the best of both the Lorelei and Cataphract" mesh concept-wise into this particular Fae Noble - one does not have to be "the best at everything" to be noteworthy. In fact finding a colorful niche for it can be most helpful in directing the mind when picking or adapting stuff for ideas.

                              Is the noble obsessed with seduction AND combat?
                              Well, those are the only two true Fae we have right now (evidenced by the Fae Nature merit), and they are Essence 2. I'm aiming for an Essence 5 being, hence the "best of both".
                              Imagine a Paladin (to the extent that this Fae understands the concepts of Good and Honor). He fell in love. He carved himself a kingdom and built a fortress to protect his love. But he grew bored. He populated it with lesser Fae, for his amusement. They ennact his fantasies, his stories, be they willing or not. Still, he grew bored, he decided to look outside his borders to fuel his stories.

                              Seduction doesn't really come into it, but he is a social beast. A shining knight in armor, and a nobleman. With nothing left in this world to challenge him (in the rigion / to his knowledge) he settled down and adopted the role of Storyteller. He creates epic stories for him and his lesser to ennact. Now, he's reaching Outside, looking for a new "cast" to play with.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by SpiderProf View Post

                                Well, those are the only two true Fae we have right now (evidenced by the Fae Nature merit), and they are Essence 2. I'm aiming for an Essence 5 being, hence the "best of both".
                                As an aside, why Essence 5? What kind of power you have in mind that calls for it, one that matches the princes and princesses of the Demon Realm or god-kings of nations? For the sake of comparison (if going a little fast-n-loose with the rules), an Essence 3 Fae of enough occult understanding could be a master of Sapphire Circle Sorcery with all that entails, among other things.
                                Hence my questioning of the necessity of the combination in itself. Mixing two level 2s running in quite different vectors not exactly a level 4 makes, so to speak.

                                One might say it sort of feels like blending Mara with Octavian, when Alveua with Octavian - or Alveua with Mara for that matter - flow much more easily on each other depending on the lay of themes and imagery in mind. If its a matter of motes, a convenient battery of sorts in the form of a peculiar artifact, unique familiar or bound-seduced-enslaved demon-elemental-ghost-god could cover up for such energy requirements.

                                Originally posted by SpiderProf View Post
                                Imagine a Paladin (to the extent that this Fae understands the concepts of Good and Honor). He fell in love. He carved himself a kingdom and built a fortress to protect his love. But he grew bored. He populated it with lesser Fae, for his amusement. They ennact his fantasies, his stories, be they willing or not. Still, he grew bored, he decided to look outside his borders to fuel his stories.

                                Seduction doesn't really come into it, but he is a social beast. A shining knight in armor, and a nobleman. With nothing left in this world to challenge him (in the region / to his knowledge) he settled down and adopted the role of Storyteller. He creates epic stories for him and his lesser to ennact. Now, he's reaching Outside, looking for a new "cast" to play with.
                                From what you described, Cataphract Plus through and through this fae seems, no need for Lorelei-mining - keep the base stats (that are pretty good on their own for social stuff too) the same and add on powers for oomph and character, just steal some from hearthstones, evocations, spells and maybe a martial arts style - or cheap tricks like comboing the hobgoblin power of getting bonuses from fear-pain with the Dawn caste anima power - for extra color. Just that should beef the NPC considerably.

                                But now on the NPC narrative itself:
                                - How long ago did it carve a kingdom and built a fortress to protect his love?
                                - Who was it, mortal, sorcerer, exalt, demon, elemental, ghost, god, another fae, or some more peculiar being?
                                - Is this realm a conquest from its misadventures in Creation or something it crafted out of naught but dreamstuff?
                                - Does the lover still live, died, became something else or their relationship changed somehow?
                                - What kind of retinue, followers or court does he have, entraced mortals, phantasms directed by his will, other fae or lesser creatures of chaos beholden-bound to its service?
                                - Why is it bored?

                                The clearer your idea of his interests and style (or other figures in his play), easier should it be for you to get a feel of what kind of stuff to mine and adapt or where to take the story.
                                Last edited by Baaldam; 12-24-2016, 01:49 PM.

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