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  • Maseiken
    started a topic The Supernal-Must-be-in-caste mechanic

    The Supernal-Must-be-in-caste mechanic

    To avoid derailing The aura thread more than it’s already been derailed.

    So personally I don’t see much value in limiting the supernal to the caste abilities? It basically massively reduces the scope of character concepts you can have at chargen, often with bizarre exclusions.

    You can’t be a Twilight making an academic study of strategy with War.
    You can’t be a Dawn caste admiral.
    You can’t be a Zenith writing holy commandments into stone.
    You can’t be a Dawn caste battle-sorcerer
    Burning Exorcism Technique is absolutely unavailable to a Zenith at chargen, as is any kind of high-essence medicine effect. Exorcism and healing the faithful isn’t in theme for them?

    To be clear, I’m not badmouthing the caste ability distribution. I think it works just fine. I just don’t get why Supernal being limited to it is necessary or helpful.

  • Heavy Arms
    replied
    OK:

    Remembering that the Blind penalty only applies to actions that primarily rely on using sight so... just don't use sight.

    The basic build:

    The Danger Sense Merit (more because it's innate rather than strictly necessary, but it makes the benefits of SAM that much better)

    A specialty in Blind Fighting for Melee.

    Sensory Acuity Prana for obvious reasons.

    Surprise Anticipation Method to help offset SAP and Eye Harbinger Awareness (also to recoup the special activation of Keen (Sense) Techniques so they're on indefinitely without constantly eating up 6m each).

    Keen Hearing and Touch Technique activated indefinitely so you don't have to activate it as the fight starts. While fighting using hearing and touch, rolling to detect non-hidden enemies is either waved (if ruled low enough difficulty), or a difficulty 1 roll on which you have an automatic 1 Charm success anyway.

    Eyeless Harbinger Awareness gives you a non-Charm dice bonus to JB (which is very nice for our blind swordsman to have), like Sensory Acuity Prana it's a relatively cheap (2m in this setup) scene long Reflexive Charm. The free upgrade with Unsurpassed Hearing and Touch Discipline means that at least out to Medium range you're at Daredevil level senses against things not hiding from you (and you have a tone of bonuses if they are).

    Unsurpassed Hearing and Touch Discipline for the boost to the two previous (plus the -1m cost on all the other hearing/touch Charms, and it's own stuff is fun too if less necessary for the concept.

    At this point we have someone that should pull off the blind swordsman/Daredevil tropes just fine, you haven't eaten up a ton Charms so you have plenty for some Melee or MA stuff depending on how you want to do that. You do need to be Supernal Awareness to pull this off at start.

    Stuff to get sooner rather than later (char-gen can be sooner if you have points to spare!):

    Fast Reflexes because you'll want to eke out every drop of JB you can.

    Studied Ear Espial (very cost effective and doesn't matter why the target is using Stealth to move around, also pre-req), Knowing Beyond Silence (another very cost effective boost to spotting people, great synergy with SAP and SAM, and works with JB too), Living Pulse Perception (situational but automatic success on noticing people or JB against them).

    Keen Taste and Smell Technique (Need it to get back to where the branches converse, and the taste/smell branch has some things worth getting esp. if you don't want to dip to far into more Charm Trees), Foe-Scenting Method (helps deal with crowds, which the hearing/touch stuff doesn't, and gets you the ability to sniff out dematerialized spirits), Unsurpassed Taste and Smell Discipline (expands tracking, -1m to F-SM, limited read intentions with smell)

    Awakening Eye for the massive JB boost.

    Stealth against you is really, really hard, and your JB pool is really big with a lot of dice tricks on it, you can easily have a starting Initiative that can kill with an opening decisive.

    Gravy:

    More specialties for Keen Hearing/Touch to help in more than just combat.

    The rest of hearing/touch and taste/smell because they're good even if not great for fighting for the most part and there are dice caps to consider.

    Eye of the Unconquered Sun, because it's good, and it helps your non-Stealthy friends too.

    Talk to your ST:

    The sight branch, because Keen Sight Technique boosts EotUS, Unsurpassed Sight Discipline on top of the the others means -1m to all Awareness Charm costs (really nice for SAP, AE, and EotUS), and Blink which is frustratingly buried in the sight branch despite applying to any Awareness roll and might actually be worth it despite two Charms you can't use blind before it.



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  • Greyman
    replied
    Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
    Specifically?
    I'm not asking this to be a dick, it's because I think it's a cool concept but I don't really see what straightforward charm lets you ignore the blindness penalties.
    They don't exactly. The Hearing and Touch branch focusses on detecting those hidden from sight.

    However, read the section under Flaws on page 167. Since the flaws are optional and don't cost points of any kind, the player may preselect how and when they affect their character (you can be circumstantially blind, as it were). You can select the Blind flaw if you want to play a swordsman who's preternatural hearing compensates for lack of sight (so their swordfighting does not primarily depend on sight).

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  • The Wizard of Oz
    replied
    Specifically?
    I'm not asking this to be a dick, it's because I think it's a cool concept but I don't really see what straightforward charm lets you ignore the blindness penalties.

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  • Heavy Arms
    replied
    The hearing/touch branch does most of the heavy lifting for a blind swordsman style character.

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  • The Wizard of Oz
    replied
    But what charms let you do that specifically?
    You can do it with a Lunar using echolocation (though it costs 1wp a day), but I can't see what the obvious and simple way to do it with Awareness is.

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  • Clophiroth
    replied
    Originally posted by Blaque View Post
    An extra on Awareness and Dawns as a note is that a lot of fiction does include warriors with superlative senses. This might include the archer who shoots from miles away, to the Zatoichi-style blind swordsmen.


    To the extent that when one of my players read the castes for the first time, his first thought (and character!) was "I want to be a Dawn Caste blind swordman with Supernal Awareness"

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  • Blaque
    replied
    An extra on Awareness and Dawns as a note is that a lot of fiction does include warriors with superlative senses. This might include the archer who shoots from miles away, to the Zatoichi-style blind swordsmen.

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  • Blaque
    replied
    Originally posted by Flare View Post
    On further thought I really like that Dawns Don't get Athletics as a Caste.

    If they did, Dawn would be a signifier closer to Full Moon, of a caste of people with supreme physical prowess (even with War).

    While that's not a BAD thing, the fact that Dawns don't get it makes it clear Dawns aren't about physical actions or physicality, they're about combat, war, and fighting. It might make Awareness a bit weirder as a Caste ability, but I can still see it.
    Agree with this. I also kind of like how it went into Zenith instead, as I think there's soemthing that the Zeniths are the ones hwo can as a whole pull off the "exemplar" thing. You could in thoery go with Athletics, Integrity, Lore, Presence, and Resistance, and just play-up being the most pfit, wise, and personable person in the world. I think that sometimes it's not just the indivdiaul Caste Ability but also to be ocnsidered the Abilities hollistically and hwo they might synergize wiht a particular Supernal also.

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  • Saur Ops Specialist
    replied
    Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

    That sounds very reductive to me.
    Well, the only capacities that a Caste has that no other Caste gets are the anima powers. Maybe they should have been the premiere niche mechanic instead of Supernal Abilities.

    So you're turning down the invitation.

    Incidentally, I recalled also having a sense of Larceny having a place in the confluence between diplomatic immunity and the world-walker/explorer angles in conveying a sense of Solars of the Eclipse Caste being folks you can't really prevent from going where they please, or their duties take them. I have this image of a demon prince desperately trying to prevent an Eclipse from going anywhere near them and being obligated to treat with them, and the Eclipse can handily ignore their walls and doors and bars to invite themselves for dinner.

    Larceny is of course a bit bigger than that, but a lot of Abilities are bigger than the Castes they're attached to.
    I thought that the Night Caste was the Caste that was supposed to go everywhere and couldn't be prevented from doing so. Eclipses are rule-masters; they know how to bend them, but they still have to abide by them, which means that true unavoidability is off the table; at some point, the host will refuse you, and at that point, continuing on is B&E, and will void your status as an envoy.

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  • Lioness
    replied
    Originally posted by armyofwhispers View Post
    So they do! Good catch
    Yeah, I saw quite a few Eclipse Caste concepts that revolved around Performance get a little caught off-guard by Supernal, so I'm sympathetic to the idea that sometimes this is an appropriate use of the Golden Rule.

    I think part of why this is an issue is that some people have it in their head that a Supernal Ability has a deeper significance than which charm tree you’ve got a head start in and that you're locked out of being ‘the best’ at something without it.

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  • Isator Levi
    replied
    Originally posted by Saur Ops Specialist View Post

    This wasn't about not being a sailor meaning that you were being a poor Eclipse - quite the opposite, really, I was originally arguing that Sail was not really necessary to be an Eclipse, nor a signature capacity that only they should have. Their signature capacity is in sealing oaths and diplomatic immunity, with a sideline into learning designated spirit Charms (and that last one is even broken down a bit by certain Occult Charms); none of this requires Sail, though a sailor might find some of it useful.
    That sounds very reductive to me.

    Originally posted by Saur Ops Specialist
    Socialize seems like it could encompass that in its typical course of finding out what people want and playing close to the chest with your own ideals and desires, as well as projecting a different air apart from your real feelings on a matter.
    So you're turning down the invitation.

    Incidentally, I recalled also having a sense of Larceny having a place in the confluence between diplomatic immunity and the world-walker/explorer angles in conveying a sense of Solars of the Eclipse Caste being folks you can't really prevent from going where they please, or their duties take them. I have this image of a demon prince desperately trying to prevent an Eclipse from going anywhere near them and being obligated to treat with them, and the Eclipse can handily ignore their walls and doors and bars to invite themselves for dinner.

    Larceny is of course a bit bigger than that, but a lot of Abilities are bigger than the Castes they're attached to.

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  • Saur Ops Specialist
    replied
    Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

    Castes can be broad. That includes giving players the option to not include every part of them in every character concept.

    Prince Diamond presumably not being a sailor specifically does not detract from how his ethos focuses on the aspect of the world-walker, anymore than a Dawn Caste who is laser focused on Single Point Style is not being a proper warrior.
    This wasn't about not being a sailor meaning that you were being a poor Eclipse - quite the opposite, really, I was originally arguing that Sail was not really necessary to be an Eclipse, nor a signature capacity that only they should have. Their signature capacity is in sealing oaths and diplomatic immunity, with a sideline into learning designated spirit Charms (and that last one is even broken down a bit by certain Occult Charms); none of this requires Sail, though a sailor might find some of it useful. Then, there are probably a lot of capabilities that a sailor might find useful, like being able to frighten off pirates with a mean look, or dampening an injury. The sea is harsh and unforgiving, and everyone in the West has to deal with it constantly (even if you're on an island, the maritime influence still reaches inland).

    Hmm... regional Supernal Abilities, by any chance? That would make them an additional option, rather than a mandate, of course.

    I see the presence of Larceny as being less about the spying and more about insinuation into the underworld. I think Larceny sufficiently distinguishes itself from Socialize on that count, and where it doesn't, it invites a measure of suspension of disbelief (so to speak).
    Socialize seems like it could encompass that in its typical course of finding out what people want and playing close to the chest with your own ideals and desires, as well as projecting a different air apart from your real feelings on a matter.

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  • armyofwhispers
    replied
    Originally posted by Lioness View Post
    Zeniths also get Performance Supernal to themselves.
    So they do! Good catch

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  • Isator Levi
    replied
    Originally posted by Saur Ops Specialist View Post

    I stated my assertion that Sail wasn't really a defining Eclipse thing since they were more quiet influence types. You seemed to disagree on the grounds of Eclipses being world-walkers. The two aren't mutually exclusive, but it seems that travel isn't strongly emphasized in an edition where you can ditch Ride and Sail for two out of three of Larceny, Presence and Occult.
    Castes can be broad. That includes giving players the option to not include every part of them in every character concept.

    Prince Diamond presumably not being a sailor specifically does not detract from how his ethos focuses on the aspect of the world-walker, anymore than a Dawn Caste who is laser focused on Single Point Style is not being a proper warrior.

    Originally posted by Saur Ops Specialist
    That's why I specified tossing out Larceny as one of the three additional choices. Eclipses have their own twist on how to be a spy, and it's squarely in Socialize.
    I see the presence of Larceny as being less about the spying and more about insinuation into the underworld. I think Larceny sufficiently distinguishes itself from Socialize on that count, and where it doesn't, it invites a measure of suspension of disbelief (so to speak).

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