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  • These are some great posts on how to frame it, guys!

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    • At $233,000 in funding - NEW ADD ON - A cloth map of the Blessed Isle and a cloth map of Creation will be offered as an Add On for $80 each, or both for $150, and can be added to any Reward Tier that includes a deluxe hardcover version of Dragon-Blooded: What Fire Has Wrought.



      At $240,000 in funding - HEIRS TO THE SHOGUNATE – REALM EXPANSION #2: Secondary Schools - materials to run games set in the secondary schools will be added to the Dragon-Blooded Companion PDF.
      Last edited by Mizu; 04-12-2018, 01:28 PM.


      Exalted Whose Name is Carved in Leaves of Jade

      Senator of the Greater Chamber

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      • Huh. With the latest update providing a larger picture depicting a found egg choosing between the razor and the coin, I notice that its representation of the former is a narrow-bladed, folding handle straight razor, as was developed in Europe in the 17th century.

        ​Whereas I've always pictured the razor offered to represent accepting the Immaculate Order as being the older, simpler, fixed handle razor consisting of a semi-circular or square blade, as might be seen used by Aang in The Last Airbender.

        ​[image]http://media.giphy.com/media/r1Btb4pm7lfTG/giphy.gif[/image]

        ​Apart from the resonance between the images, I always found the notion of the simpler razor to be more fitting to the austerity of the Immaculate Order, and that the simple shape had a nice symmetry with the coin.

        Am I overthinking it a bit?


        I have approximate knowledge of many things.
        Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
        https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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        • Okay, meaning no disrespect Murcushio, you're saying lengthy points that I feel a need to make a singular, focused response to, so if I quote and respond to a single line, it's because I feel as though the key point can be represented there.

          Originally posted by Murcushio View Post
          This implies that any mastery over their essence (or whatever terminology you want to use for "a Charm") a Dragon-Blooded learns at school basically happened by accident and without guidance from their teachers. I'm... not sure that's the case, and I'm definitely sure I wouldn't WANT it to be the case.
          I think the approach to take is not that the instruction of teachers is irrelevant, but that it does not reference the Charms specifically and individually.

          ​A Dragon Blood who has received instruction in cultivating and harnessing their Essence comes out of it with, say, four Charms. None of those Charms were described by name in the training (although some of the more obvious or iconic ones, such as being able to send your words to somebody far away, may have been seen distinctly, just not with a flowery name for it), but they are the mechanical representation of the results of the training. It probably represents it even more strongly in the very fact that the use of skill by the Dragon Blooded becomes something that is expressed in mystical power; the kind of training you received in youth is why you'll be able to continuously develop Charms across your lifetime.

          ​This is a thing that exists below the resolution of mechanics, because it really wouldn't be fun to say that an outcaste character who received no formal instruction from anybody is mechanically inferior at learning or using Charms. It's mostly a thing to characterize the culture of the Scarlet Dynasty and background of characters therein.

          Otherwise, the secondary schools are not environments in which you assemble classes of students repeatedly practicing Wingardium Leviosa.

          ​Which is not what they've ever been. Apart from the Heptagram, the basic principle has always been that they're where the Dynasts go to get the equivalent of an Ivy League quality education in skills relevant to being on top of the world.

          ​Which is also not a thing that can really be represented in these mechanics, beyond specialties and justification for the facts that can be declared with Lore or otherwise.

          ​The important thing about the secondary schools is in how they characterize the Scarlet Dynasty as something that does not play fast and loose with whether or not those involved will be actually qualified to lead armies or run the world from a purely technical standing, and the associated expenses. And even apart from how the system is not nearly nuanced enough to represent the differences this might have to anybody else who came about their dots in War or Bureaucracy and the like, it doesn't really need to. That's not where the dramatic thrust of the gameplay is, and even people in real life who have received Ivy League education have been outperformed by people who came from less prestigious institutions.

          ​EDIT: I propose that another manner in which their education might directly relate to the Charms they develop is in the notion that Charms can often emerge from the application of skills under adversity, and the kind of environment you get in a Realm secondary school is at least as adverse (if a good deal safer) then what you'll get in practical experience adventuring in the Threshold. When you attend the House of Bells and learn a Melee Charm to cause your weapon to give off blinding sparks as somebody parries it, it isn't because your teacher brought you into a training room and gave you some kind of mental blueprint over how the Charm worked, and then had you practice it a hundred times on a training dummy, it's because your Exalted Essence (that you're imperceptibly aware of and feel control over due to the spiritual exercises and mystical instruction referring to your Essence as a whole rather than your Charms individually) finally managed to express itself in the midst of trying to excel in yet another live weapons exercise. It's not an incantation that you were taught and tried repeatedly, it's a moment of the skills you're using and the environment you're in clicking, and your power flows out of it.
          Last edited by Isator Levi; 04-12-2018, 01:59 PM.


          I have approximate knowledge of many things.
          Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
          https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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          • I would say that, even if they can't directly teach charms, the teachers must have methods that help you unlock your own potential and provoke epiphanies that might help you unlock that last little thing you need to figure out how to do a thing. Possibly they use koans and aphorisms.

            Alternately, I think you can assume that some charms are techniques like tonberrian suggests and assume that at least some of that knowledge can be conveyed from one DB to another, much like Iroh could teach Zuko how to deflect lightning. This doesn't mean it will work, much like Iroh couldn't teach Zuko to create lightning, but you can try.

            Actually, using Avatar might be a good idea. While the various teachers in the series give you tips and help and suggest that you need to widen your stance or whatever, ultimately, it's you doing the thing and there are aspects of it that you really can't teach directly.


            ....

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            • Originally posted by BrilliantRain View Post

              Actually, using Avatar might be a good idea. While the various teachers in the series give you tips and help and suggest that you need to widen your stance or whatever, ultimately, it's you doing the thing and there are aspects of it that you really can't teach directly.
              ​That actually reminds me of another part of it; there is the occasional specific, named and codified move that is applied, but it's evident that Bending training does not consist solely of being taught a library of these techniques, and that actual fighting consists of a lot of varied and improvised applications.

              ​The central thing in training in Bending arts that we see tends to be conveying the mindset and spiritual foundation of the Bending. The main thing that Aang learns from Toph isn't 1000 different ways to manipulate rocks and soil, but the need to be solid and unmoving.

              ​I imagine that in any references to the likes of the Cloister of Wisdom teaching you about your Essence, what you'll mostly get is... the kinds of things that came up in the Aspect descriptions. Sure, your Aspect already gives you a lot of that mindset, but if you're taught to effectively recognise it, articulate it, and live in alignment with it, then the Charms that are expressions of it will emerge as appropriate.

              ​Resistance, Integrity and their Charms aren't exactly recognised as distinct things in the setting, but if an Earth Aspect gets taught to understand their strengths in being a solid pillar against which they should let challenges break, then in the occasions where they face challenges (which they definitely will in those schools) and stand firm against them, then those things shall break against them.

              ​I imagine that even Ephemeral Form Composition is the kind of thing that doesn't arise from having been taught a specific way to manipulate Essence into the form of a blueprint so much as it comes from somebody having that perspective on structures, materials, Essence and the world that Mnemon did when she looked out over Jiara.

              ​Hmm, come to think of it, one thing that might benefit a Dragon Blood being taught about Essence is the rudiments of the mindset of the other Aspects, since they'll probably need that if they want to learn Charms with an element not their own.

              ​For that matter, speaking of Mnemon, that chapter fiction in general might be instructive. I'd say that the manner in which Mnemon learnt how to survive being stabbed and slashed a dozen times from a rain of daggers was being taught how to be the kind of person who would face down a rain of daggers.


              I have approximate knowledge of many things.
              Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
              https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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              • It might help that in real life there's not even really such a thing as a discreet technique. Like if you're learning how to box and throw punches you don't sit there trying again and again until you cross some threshold and suddenly your jabs are just as good as anyone else's. Exalted is a game so it's difficult to represent it like that though.

                That doesn't mean that certain techniques can't have names in setting, again in real life you've got a ton of different named techniques for everything from fighting to parkour, but being able to throw a wind blade is more of a big sloppy sliding scale than casting a spell in DnD.

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                • Originally posted by Equitable Remedy View Post
                  I think that this will be the dominant (ubiquitous) take on the forums, but that's not what I'm seeing in the text.

                  But what do you see in the text? Do you think that the gap is too big or what?

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                  • Consider that the vast majority of time spent learning to do something is time spent almost-but-not-quite doing the thing you want to do. Consider also that everything another person might do in front of me is something that I can theoretically, with enough time, training, and talent, do at least semi-competently. In observing, I can begin to theorize how it's done because every human capability is one of my capabilities, barring physical barriers to success.

                    ​So every person with Dragon-Blooded essence can understand on some level what it would take to, say, set their whispers to drift upon the wind. Many can probably almost​ do it, the way that mortals might almost be able to whistle ("I just need to practice until I get the right lip-shape."). ​And even once a person learns to whistle, they all learn to do it differently. I don't know how to whistle with the piercing strength that my grandfather had, and my mouth may just not be built to do it, but I can whistle my own way.

                    ​All that wibbly-wobbly stuff is below the level of mechanical resolution.
                    That space is where stunts and anima and signs of breeding live. If dogs were making a Human: The Thumbening RPG, they might well write a "whistling" Charm and debate what it's like for humans to do or learn this impossible-for-dogs thing, because they don't have the parts needed, the same way we don't have the right essence. But the answer's the same either way: anything we have the capability to do, we can observe, comprehend, practice, and master.

                    ​Edit: Ninja'd by the good doctor.

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                    • -Bursts in-
                      IM SORRY, DID THAT UPDATE HAVE THE FACE SNAKED AS AN IMAGE?


                      The Book of Laughing Serpents, Vol 1,Vol. 2,,Vol 3; Vol 4; Vol 5
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                      • Originally posted by Epee102 View Post
                        DID THAT UPDATE HAVE THE FACE SNAKED AS AN IMAGE?
                        ​Nono, that's clearly a faced snake. Easy mistake to make.


                        I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                        Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
                        https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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                        • Catching up on Previews, and just got to the outcaste, and I just had to pop in to mention how much I loved the outcaste name "Heady Monsoon".

                          That's just such a good name. Even if I don't use that NPC, I will be using that name at some point.

                          Edit: I really hope that art was inspired by, and intended to stoke, the confusion around the term "face-snaked"


                          Raksha are my fae-vorite.

                          Reincarnation of magnificentmomo.

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                          • I like most of the Dragon-Blooded Charms I've seen so far, but one I'm not sure about is Hesieh's Discerning Tongue. I like the idea, but letting characters detect poison before consuming it seems like something a Storyteller might want to let characters do by default, and the Charm's existence kind of makes it seem like you shouldn't - and if you do, it raises the question of how that should work and exactly how the Charm makes you better at it.

                            It's not too bad. The concept is cool, the automatic Essence 3 upgrade could be nice, and it's reasonable to say that without it, you're likely to consume some poison before you realize it's there. But the Charm has clearly defined mechanics while any mortal capabilities it enhances do not, as far as I can remember, and that kind of bugs me.

                            Maybe that's just me, I don't know.

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                            • Originally posted by Phoenix_Kensai View Post
                              I like most of the Dragon-Blooded Charms I've seen so far, but one I'm not sure about is Hesieh's Discerning Tongue. I like the idea, but letting characters detect poison before consuming it seems like something a Storyteller might want to let characters do by default, and the Charm's existence kind of makes it seem like you shouldn't - and if you do, it raises the question of how that should work and exactly how the Charm makes you better at it.

                              It's not too bad. The concept is cool, the automatic Essence 3 upgrade could be nice, and it's reasonable to say that without it, you're likely to consume some poison before you realize it's there. But the Charm has clearly defined mechanics while any mortal capabilities it enhances do not, as far as I can remember, and that kind of bugs me.

                              Maybe that's just me, I don't know.
                              My 2 cents is that you should probably consider it in terms of the myriad of poisons that are not particularly detectable. I suspect it's easy for a GM to say you can do a perception + awareness at a ridiculous difficulty that's unlikely to succeed and this charm lets you subvert that. But if poisons were easily detectable they wouldn't be used! In general, the devs seem unwilling to define discrete mortal mechanics for mundane things, preferring GMs to come up with what makes sense for them. That's not always appealing, but it does seem to fit the direction of a lot of this stuff.

                              Again, my 2 cents.


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                              I have made many tools and other things for 3rd Edition. I now host all of my creations on my Google site: The Vault of the Unsung Hero

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                              • I wonder if I'm the only one kinda hoping Trauma Bear makes an appearance on the artwork at some point...
                                ...I don't think an animal-loving person of Vance's grade is gonna want the poor bear to suffer anymore, though XD
                                Last edited by danelsan; 04-12-2018, 09:44 PM.


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