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  • Alpharius Quite well said! I agree completely!


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    • It's notable that Exalted 1e did have an attempt of adventures in two places: Time of Tumult and Exalted: the Aucothhonians.

      Time of Tumult had three main scenarios. One was a two-parter, whcih is generally neat for some settinb uilding but is mostly forgettable since it's basically an Exalted reskin of a dungeon crawl deathtrap. I think getting to the Hidden Fortress is more itneresting, but is so early in the line it also doesn't quite line up very well with how the game eventaully evolved.

      I hear mixed on the "Western Exiles" story. But I think it's notable that it veers quite a bit from the Adventure Path thing liek Pathfidner does. It's more an outline,w here you kind of go through various vinettes, and encounter a diversity of beings. And it's also notably not like, that long. It takes a hwole chapter of a book, but I think not a lot like, happens that takes a lot. It is very much a start of a campaign, but I think is notably forgettable.

      The best scneario in that book was (to me at least) "Crusaders of the Machine God". And it's notable to me how differently structured it is compared to a Pathfinder Adventue Path. It's very ST-facing, describing beforehand notable regions and things, and providing a timeline of events with "How things go unelss PCs intervene and plot elements to work wtih from there." I think it pulled things off well for balance of regionalism (It was constrained mostly to the South and the consequences there) and how it presented the Yugashite forces as overwelming the region but having setbacks and becoming a new empire int ehre gion. It feels like you can use it in a lot of differetn ways and for a lot of didfferent games (I used parts of it half a dozen times over the years).

      The scenarios in Exalted: the Autochthonians by contrast...don't. THey provide a couple different takes. "The Locust War" tries It hink to retell CotMG, but it fails in that I think it misses scale, tries to do too much int he setting all at once, and isn't so good at integrating Alchemicals and Yugash into Creation without it seeming like a rollover. It was too apocalyptic in its toen and prone to just silly hyperbole. While the Crsuaders outline was good for being a neat "Event in Creation" in a bigger world, the Locust War is presented as something that like, defines the world and tirs to cover so much to get silly. It's the land memes were born from.

      "The Great Source" was I think the best of these scenarios. It presents an interesting setup, and plotline for PCs to get into. It uses a neat setting element (the Eye of Autochthon) and I think doesn't go too far in existential threat realm of things. It's just kind of odd since that after the Eye is found it becomes this paint-by-numbers world-adventure and I think needed more expansion on that. And it almsot to me loses out on what makes Autochthonia nintersting since it's so Creation-facing.

      "Engines of Annihilation" is an...interesting story, which also does the timeline thing. It just happens to also like "The Locust War" go into "Total apocalypse mode" with things so badly that it almost loses the thread of what makes Creation and Autochthonia interesting settings in the rpcoess. It's I think too much about Deathlord as existential threat and the consequences of dead Primordials than it is about like, stories for charcters ina way. It is a neat idea I think in the end wasnt' needed.

      The only other 1e storyline like these I think was Swar in Bastions of the North, but I don't generally here much folks tlak about it and I barelyr emember it myself. It's basically again an exotic environment characters just kind of poke at with vinettes and nto a lot happesnt here beyond what the ST does with I think.

      All in all, I think it stands out that the most useful adventure for Exalted sin't an Adventure Path, but a event outline. Exalted just as a whole operates often on scales and with enough break-points as defined above that trying to boil it down to specific interactions and such loses a lot of what makes Exalted, even in a more combat-orientated style, hard to encapsulate into such a setup.

      Now note, Heirs to the Shogunate apparently is going ot have two new scenarios, which use "The Locust Crusade" as their style templates: "Realm Civil War" and "The War in the West". I kind of hope future companion books bring about similar scenario thingies, as I think thsoe are really cool and for most games, going to be more usefult han another "Hidden Fortress" or whateve the hell happened in Return of the Scarlet Empress.


      And stuff.
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      • Blaque Thanks for the insightful coverage of all of those scenarios!

        I think it would be foolish to ever give up on trying to make an awesome AP for Exalted just because it has never been done before, though.


        Host of The Deliberative Podcast
        Owner/Admin of DeepWyld.com
        Original Creator of the complete nWoD conversion of Fantasy Grounds 2

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        • Originally posted by PneumaPilot View Post
          Blaque Thanks for the insightful coverage of all of those scenarios!

          I think it would be foolish to ever give up on trying to make an awesome AP for Exalted just because it has never been done before, though.
          I think there's also something to be said on resources and time there.

          White Wolf did do some adventures (The Giovanni Chornicles, the Ventrue Chronices, the By Night books, and so on) but by the tiem fo Exalted, started moving away from them in general I find. The developers also in general I think have always preferred more setting content useful to more games in general versus adventure paths which while useful for some games, aren't as useufl for the world as a whoel. Note that Creation in general is much, much larger than the default region in a standard D&D fantasy setting, so there is also more room that just needs covered by the game as a whole.

          During 2e this was just kind of continued and it seemed like while attempts were done with the SAS, it just never took off in the end. (I liked and started a game with Daughter of Nexus myself, though). There were two such adventures in 2e at least: Daughter of Nexus and Contagion of Law. They're neat, but It hink a big thing is it's notable production levels foa typical 2e Exalted book to a Paizo or WotC book. The amount of budget Exalted gets in general with manpower, art assets, and writing means that choices were made and I think in geenral, the devs have always opted for what they found more useful for more games. Which often is books that have lots of plot hooks, rather than fewer more detailed plots. A Gazetter like Blood & Salt which also has story seeds in it is going to be more suefl than a module for moe players I think. This is arguably a flaw with 2e, which often didn't do this quite so well or often took plot hooks and just spilled them out as something happening already instead.


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          • Right. I understand their thinking about what would be a better use of time, manpower, money, etc., I just also think it’s a misstep. That was my point in the episode, to say that a game like Pathfinder, with its model, has managed to produce a living world full of deep setting information, while simultaneously producing a LOT of adventure content that actually sells the game (and shows people how to play).

            And I think that the writers/decision makers look at the outcome of something like the SAS and think, “Well, that wasn’t as successful as we would have liked, so adventures must not be the best use of our time and resources,” but that’s not comparing apples to apples. Hold up the Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition against those two SAS modules and ask yourself if they even belong in the same plane of existence. Of course they don’t! But what if Exalted DID have its own RotR, in its own flavor? I think the game would be much more of a hit than it currently is.


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            Original Creator of the complete nWoD conversion of Fantasy Grounds 2

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            • For the record, I do think Adventures for Exalted can be done. I do like the Adventure Path concept and I’ve even been trying to brainstorm my own, for use with the Storyteller’s Vault later on.

              But I think it’s important to look at places where, as the author, you’re assuming things will go one way and consider what happens if things don’t go that way. Yes, granted, sometimes the answer to that is “well, if they don’t grab the adventure hook, I guess we’ll see what’s on the X-Box instead” but sometimes there are entirely reasonable responses to a situation that need to be considered instead of just ignored.

              But then, I guess that’s what playtesting is for.

              I mean, your proposed Adventure Path introduces flying enemies fairly early on. I like playing thinky types and Sorcerers, so, if I were playing it, assuming I didn’t go for Cirrus Skiff during Exalted character creation (it’s a cool spell with a very nice control bonus and it’s scary with a ranged combat build), it’s probably gonna be on my “to buy” list once the flying Dragon Kings show up. Because flying enemies can be really hard to deal with if you can’t fly yourself, so learning to fly is a logical response. And, even if I didn’t get Cirrus Skiff, I probably did get Demon of the First Circle so summoning one that can fly me around would be a logical and reasonable action from my point of view at that point.

              And then, much later on, if I can ferry around a Dawn to fight people outside the ship, it will likely change the dynamic of that entire fight. I mean, the Essence 4 Dawn in my game launched an attack that would have entirely destroyed a Size 4 Battlegroup of First Circle demons (it ended up doing 58 lethal HLs of damage, which was exactly enough to reduce a Battlegroup of those demons from Size 4 to Size 0. Pity the Battlegroup was only Size 1). It was under near perfect circumstances and it used up most of his mote pool, but it’s a thing he can do. I kinda suspect that the Solars would have similar power by that point in the Adventure Path, so if you want to crash the ship, they’ll need a very good reason not to just go outside and kill everyone. Falling from the sky would seem to be a deterrent, but, as noted, Cirrus Skiff, summoned Agata, flight artifacts, the acrobatic Dawn saying “Hey, watch this!” and then leaping from Dragon King to Dragon King while murdering them, and so on.

              Which probably means that Flight powers should be addressed early on in the AP. Either make it part of the social contract with a note at the beginning saying “access to flight and fast travel is going to be a big deal in this adventure, so make sure that the players are aware that they probably shouldn’t pick up those kinds of powers” or something, or redesign the adventure a bit so that it’s not a huge deal if the players can fly around on their own.

              Really, that’s all I’m saying. Once you get into the details and playtesting, things will likely happen that may necessitate a rewrite of a good chunk of the AP or at least some helpful notes. But I don’t think it’s impossible to do a good one.


              ....

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              • Right now, I think the main issue standing in the way of Exalted getting Adventure Paths is the fact that they apparently have enough writers to handle like one or two books at a time. So doing an Adventure Path basically means they’d have to push whatever the next splat was off for a year, which I don’t think they’re ready to do.

                I suspect that the best way to get a good Adventure Path for Exalted will be to write and publish one once Exalted gets added to the Storyteller’s Vault and see what happens.


                ....

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                • Episode 21 is live! In this one, we talk about the results from our Adventure Path polls and take a bit more of a dive into Dragon Kings!


                  Host of The Deliberative Podcast
                  Owner/Admin of DeepWyld.com
                  Original Creator of the complete nWoD conversion of Fantasy Grounds 2

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                  • Originally posted by PneumaPilot View Post
                    Episode 21 is live! In this one, we talk about the results from our Adventure Path polls and take a bit more of a dive into Dragon Kings!
                    Couple things that stood out in the podcast:

                    - Dragon-Kings were actually in 1e too. They first got talked about in Ruins of Rathess and there were full rules for them in the Exalted Player's Guide save for the Dark Paths, actually.

                    - Tortured Bodhisatva is the best path and Murder Samsara and Wear Her Sad Robes is the best Step name, damn it.

                    - Liminals actually pretty purposefully don't follow the corpse elements from Abyssals. Their Aspects are Blood, Breath, Flesh, Marrow, and Soil, more well, "threshold" things between life and death, than simply death itself.

                    - Remember human origins and such depends on edition. While the creators did make humans in 1e and 2e, we don't know why and what they gave a shit to them after that isn't clear, so the humans then siding iwth the gods is moot if they went on spending millennia just being humans in the world after that.

                    - There are actually some Dragon King sin Heaven, which gets missed abit.

                    - Pterok is pronounced "terok" I think. The P is silent like in Pteranodon.

                    - Mosok, Anklok, and Raptok are also based on extinct repitles, namely mososaurs, anklylosaurs, and raptors I Think.

                    - I would argue on reincarnation, Dragon Kings are actually more like the Avatar than Exalted are. A thing of note is that while you are encouraged to pick up a bit where you left off, each life for the Dragon King is still a new person. They can even be born into different Breeds I think between lives. To me it is a bit more like tapping into the Avatar Cycle than what Exalts do. To me, Exalts the best way to describe them i s less a soul and more like...a title. You inherit the Exaltation and it's almost this legacy that's foisted onto you and the privileges and obligations attached to it. Your memories are sparse and such from there but you don't so much talk to yoru past but tap into some elements useful for your current power.

                    - Remember that Djala and beastfolk are sitll human in Creation. Creation just has a pretty wide breadth as to what counts as human.

                    - I think the devs said they plan to have them as potential character things in the future, but like most things, they gotta wait for other stuff like Exalts first.


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                    • Episode 22 is live! In this one, we talk about making two-dot artifacts, and we make a few of our own! Plus, all the resource and art packs are now available for Storyteller’s Vault.


                      Host of The Deliberative Podcast
                      Owner/Admin of DeepWyld.com
                      Original Creator of the complete nWoD conversion of Fantasy Grounds 2

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                      • For the record, yes, it was a real thing: https://youtu.be/O9ilLwHwrRo


                        ....

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                        • Hahaha! Man, that looks so bad!


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                          • Episode 23 is live! In this one, we talk about whether or not Exalted could ever possibly sustain an organized play campaign, and what shape(s) that could take.


                            Host of The Deliberative Podcast
                            Owner/Admin of DeepWyld.com
                            Original Creator of the complete nWoD conversion of Fantasy Grounds 2

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