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Does anyone actually Like the Bronze/Gold divide?

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  • #31
    It turns out that real-world political factions have been known to change their agendas over time, and that they do not necessarily change their names along with their agendas.


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    • #32
      I see it as necessary for game logic, but poorly implemented. Sidereals present a problem: if the Loom is so good, why aren't teacup ninjas ganking all the Solars (is yeeting the new term younglings use?). So, you have a subfaction that can mess with fate / the Loom. But, that created problems, and nowadays you have other factions & things to handle that. Whatever the anti-Sids are called, Lunars have access to outside-of-fate wyld zones, etc.

      One non-exalted approach I liked was 40k Puritan/Radical. The young, or naive if you're being insulting, tend towards optimism, getting the job done, and doing things the idealistic way. The older an Inquisitor gets, the more cynical, pragmatic, and eventually 'worth any cost' you get. And assination is limited to a dull roar because the younger don't have the established power base, and the older can be 'give them enough time, and they always join our side'.

      Ultimately, I think the big problem of 2E version is a combination of numbers & travel time. Without gods or mortal agents being involved, you know all the other Sids, you've talked to them or overheard them at the water cooler a few times, you know their general highlevel opinions unless everyone (even one week on job new people) uses Give No Info Away Prana all the time. And/or, all Sids are 00 agents, as close to always in the field as possible, they always work alone cause spread so thin, and on average are a week's travel from the nearest Gate back to the office. I think somethin akin to game-mechanic supported Werewolf kinfolk networks are needed, with most of the conflict happening between pawns. And party platforms with more planks than pro/anti Solar. A bit more conflicts at the level of problems affecting Direction or sub-committee

      Hmm. I also think I'm a bit loopy right now. Something about this doesn't look right.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by SpoonR View Post
        I see it as necessary for game logic, but poorly implemented. Sidereals present a problem: if the Loom is so good, why aren't teacup ninjas ganking all the Solars (is yeeting the new term younglings use?).
        I 100% need a developper to put the words "Sidereals yeeting all the Solars" in an official book, I'm ready to put all my life savings to make this happen.


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        • #34
          Honestly, my issue with the Gold and Bronze factions was that in 2e the only issue provided for them was whether or not they should overthrow the Solars, which was a bit of a problem for me as the main setting takes place literally millennia after the fact. Now I could easily assume the Gold and Bronze Factions became relevant again with the return of the solars because supporting the solars, getting rid of them, and all that are now viable and immediate options. Maybe a variant of the factional debate had cropped up during the time between Usurpation and the return on whether or not to support the remaining Solars, get rid of them, with blips into "is the current threat bad enough that we should release the rest of the Solars again" and so on. The problem was that the end all be all of Sidereal politics in 2e was Bronze, Gold, and maybe Silver I think that last was a fan thing, but you get the idea. There were no other mentions of what Sidereals had political differences on, if Gold and Bronze had taken on a larger significance and the Usurpation was just the first mentioned as the readers needed to hear the most historically significant action or principle of the factions as opposed to whether or not the Sids think they should do something about the missing Beast(s) of Resplendent Delights.

          My issue was that it was the only thing of Sidereal politics presented as if there had never been any other matter of importance or significance for the fivefold fellowship to debate. Like if you'd run a game in the fifty years after the founding of the Realm then Sidereal politics still would be entirely based on and consumed by something that hadn't been an issue in somewhere between 3 and 5 thousand years.
          Last edited by nalak42; 08-27-2020, 03:00 AM. Reason: fixing typos and some sentance structures

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          • #35
            I think a better way to view the Bronze/Gold divide in 3e is to view it through the changed perspective on both the first age and the importance of the dynasty in the status quo; in the last edition, the dynasty kind of just existed to be the antagonistic falling empire that opposes your characters, with the nuance it had eroding over time as the edition went on, and the bronze factions' focus was on 'solars bad!', meanwhile the first age was largely about how awesome and important the solars were and how the world was diminished by their absence (for better or worse) and the gold factions' main focus was 'solars good!'.
            In 3e there is a lot more focus on the ups and downs of the Scarlet Dynasty without as much effort made into making it the realm of protagonists or antagonists, it is a place run by heroes but many are at each others' throats and/or abuse their power while looking down on those who don't follow them. The first age meanwhile was made by the Exalted Host working in tandem, bringing the out the best in each Exalt and allowing them to accomplish what they did because they each brought their own talents.
            If you shift the view of the sidereal factions to be less about their opinions on the Solars, and more about their view on the ideal future of creation: that the world is progressing as it should under the Realm (or it was), or that the status quo should be bucked and the Exalted Host reformed with the solars being the spark that strikes the tinder of these faction's hostility, as their return is the ultimate threat to the status quo as it was vs the possibility of a new order, than the conflict would mean more.
            I believe this is the direction of the conflict from what I've seen in discussions of the Sidereals.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by Eric Minton View Post
              It turns out that real-world political factions have been known to change their agendas over time, and that they do not necessarily change their names along with their agendas.
              Read: They’ve spent the last 760ish years as the pro-Realm and anti-Realm parties.

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              • #37
                There's clearly been a problem with the Sidereal Factions that's been there since first edition, maybe even their inception that's left the Bronze Faction starved in terms of representation.

                Without looking anyone up, who do you remember besides Kejak?


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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Lioness View Post
                  There's clearly been a problem with the Sidereal Factions that's been there since first edition, maybe even their inception that's left the Bronze Faction starved in terms of representation.

                  Without looking anyone up, who do you remember besides Kejak?
                  Ayns Syn (sp) and her human-skin gloves.

                  "Okay, smart pants name two?"

                  Uh... that Chosen of Serenity who uses Silver Voiced Nightingale with her massive goremaul bell thing?


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                  • #39
                    The gloves only became a thing in MoEP:Infernals. I consider it non-canon.

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                    • #40
                      EDIT: Completely misunderstood the nature of Lioness' post. Ignore me...
                      Last edited by Moss Reynholm; 08-27-2020, 01:16 PM.

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by Lioness View Post
                        Without looking anyone up, who do you remember besides Kejak?
                        Well, I was just re-reading the 2e Sids book, so this is slightly skewed, but before doing that, I think I could have remembered Anys Syn as the martial arts master (though I might not have remembered her name). And I would have remembered the signature Sids, of whom I'm pretty sure Shepard of the North Star and Iron Siaka were solid Bronzes, and Crimson Banner Executioner was a waffling Bronze.

                        In 3e, incidentally, I really hope they keep Nazri around, the 2e head of the Independent faction. As one of the notable POCs in the leadership of the Sidereals, I'd hate to lose him. I don't think he needs to be the Head of the Independent Faction, though, not least because the Gold Faction, as an organized group, really doesn't seem to have been a thing for a long time. My own take on Nazri is that he's a prominent Bronze Faction member, but of a more "modern" bent than Chejop. My vision of the history of the Bronze Faction is that Chejop wasn't the overall leader until after the Contagion. Before that, he was one of the architects of the Usurpation, and certainly prominent, but not more so than Sidereals like Rakan Thulio or Anys Syn. The Bronze Faction as a whole supported the Dragon-Blooded during the Shogunate. After the Contagion, Chejop and Anys Syn were basically the only two major Usurpation participants left (Thulio having left to dig up the Getiminians), and backing the Empress and the Realm to the hilt was Chejop's big personal idea, which he basically pushed most of the rest of the Bronze Faction into. But some of the Bronzes, led by Nazri, expressed doubt that this was the best idea, claiming that the Contagion had effectively cleared the board and it was time to encourage Creation to develop in a more multi-polar way. Since then, the Bronzes have been somewhat divided, with Chejop basically trying to promote the Realm at every possible step, with a goal of reestablishing Dragon-Blooded rule over the whole of Creation, while Nazri's side doesn't mind supporting the Realm's current size and prominence, and preventing other polities from getting too big or overthrowing it, but not backing the Realm's further expansion.

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                        • #42
                          As far as Scroll of Exalts is concerned for the signature circle, Shepard of the North Star is an Independent mentored by Nazri and Crimson Banner Executioner is Gold Faction. Though you're 100% correct on Iron Siaka.


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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Lioness View Post
                            As far as Scroll of Exalts is concerned for the signature circle, Shepard of the North Star is an Independent mentored by Nazri and Crimson Banner Executioner is Gold Faction. Though you're 100% correct on Iron Siaka.

                            Heh. Still kinda goes to your point, if even the sigs aren't distinctively one faction or another to the point where I got two out of three wrong. And looking over May Blossom and Black Ice Shadow, it seems that May's a solid Gold, and Black Ice is an independent by default. So even the signatures were 80% Gold or Independent. Bronze really didn't get much there.

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                            • #44
                              This is like how I used to challenge people to name high-ranking women in the Realm who weren't daughters of the Scarlet Empress. Some people might do better at this than others but there's a clear trend in the data.


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                              • #45
                                I'll say that while I like the idea of these factions, I'm also all for the idea that such a division has only really been a thing for the last five years, even if there are longstanding tensions that it has allowed to crystallize.

                                For one thing, I think there would be a much stronger pathos to the idea that a lot of these were Sidereals who were cordial, even friendly, when all of them were focused on the same business of enforcing Destiny and overseeing Exigents and worrying about the agenda of Rakan Thulio, but the return of the Solars at large and throwing a big question mark over who should be running the future of the world quickly and severely tears them apart.

                                It's like how Chejop Kejak is supposed to have been friend and lover of the last two incarnations of the head of the Gold Faction respectively, except placed into a context where it actually matters.

                                At the very least, I find even the name Bronze Faction has some more depth to it, with a hint of irony, if it's a label that has only been applicable for half a decade; if particular dedication to upholding the rule of the Dragon Blooded (in the face of apparent viable alternatives) wasn't a thing until the Jade Prison was broken. The point at which a bunch of them get together and say "in spite of everything that has gone wrong, this is the better course to stick it because it's proven and reliable", and their opponents characterize that as something like settling for the bronze medal.

                                It at least resonates to me, because I find shades of what makes compelling narrative in the tragedy of the Irish Civil War.


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