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Homebrewing the Fair Folk

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  • Homebrewing the Fair Folk

    The Fair Folk have fascinated me for a while, and ever since 2e introduced the Yozi Excellencies, defined by theme and concept rather than Ability or Attribute, I've had a vague idea of adapting it for the raksha. On rereading the 3e rules about Intimacies recently, it finally clicked for me: the raksha are defined by the things they assert/believe about themselves, and by their relationships to other beings and their environment.

    I am not trying to adapt any of the previous editions' representations of the Fair Folk, but reinventing them from first principles as beings who view everything through the lens of relationships and stories. I'm mainly interested in creating something that can be used to make interesting antagonists, but because of my roots in 3.PF and Exalted 2e, I felt that the best way to do that would be to design them as a playable splat that can have complexities omitted or stripped out later. With that in mind, this is what I've got so far.

  • #2
    Giving Fair Folk an Excellency is a pretty dramatic power-bump.

    Typically Fair Folk can take their Attributes and Abilities above five.

    Manifest Potential should probably work on Basic and Major projects in the Wyld, and Basic Projects in Creation.

    Blessing of the Wyld has great bones but it needs some riders (like only working in at least the Boardermarches, or confering mutations/flaws that mar the character).

    Otherwise... looks good. Not 100% I'd use it, but let's see where it goes? Great start.


    Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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    • #3
      Any reason you dumped Raksha starting at Attribute 3 and removing their attribute cap at 8? I think I know the reason, but I'm curious.


      Read my shit at my homebrew topic, 2.5e and 3e material!
      Play Alchemical's in 3e now, you're welcome.

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      • #4
        One question I have is about the Raksha equivalent to Ox-Body Technique. It grants -0 HL's equal to Stamina / 2, rounded up, which considering the lack of an attribute cap can become pretty ridiculous. Assuming a Solar Exalt and a Raksha both had Stamina 5, the Solar would get 1x -0 HL, 1x -1 HL, and 1x -2 HL, while the Raksha would just get 3x -0 HLs. That's a better value than Solars get, and it only escalates from there since a Raksha at character creation can extend their Stamina rating past 5. I'm not exactly an authority on the subject, but maybe you alter it a little to be a bit less powerful, perhaps even just granting -0 HLs equal to Stamina/2, rounded down. That would lower the curve just slightly enough that it wouldn't be as bad.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
          Giving Fair Folk an Excellency is a pretty dramatic power-bump.
          Is it? I hadn't realized, it's been so long since I looked at any of the old rules for Fair Folk. The Excellency was actually the root of the whole project, a sort of "build-your-own" Yozi excellency; it's more broadly applicable than a 2e-style Yozi Excellency, but it's also much weaker. I could see a nerf that requires a purchase of the Excellency for each Intimacy you want to be able to channel it through...

          Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
          Typically Fair Folk can take their Attributes and Abilities above five.
          Yeah, I explicitly called that out. "Divide 12 dots among primary Attributes, 8 dots among secondary Attributes, and 4 dots among tertiary Attributes. Attributes may be raised higher than 5." (emphasis added)

          Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
          Manifest Potential should probably work on Basic and Major projects in the Wyld, and Basic Projects in Creation.
          I'm not sure I agree. In Creation things are fixed in their shapes, and I feel like Major projects should take at least a little while, even for Raksha. I definitely want to give them Charms that interact more with Major (and Superior and Legendary) projects – I just have to figure out what they should be, first.

          Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
          Blessing of the Wyld has great bones but it needs some riders (like only working in at least the Boardermarches, or confering mutations/flaws that mar the character).
          Blessing of the Wyld is in the Concepts section and tagged as WIP for a reason, yeah.

          Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
          Otherwise... looks good. Not 100% I'd use it, but let's see where it goes? Great start.
          Thank you! I was actually hoping for this to turn somewhat collaborative, since what's in the doc now is about as far as my current burst of inspiration carried me. I have a vague notion of one or two social charms based on the idea that the Fair Folk are playing roles all the way down and don't have a true self as we humans understand it, and Ride charms based around achieving and maintaining dominance (since you have to dominate a creature before it will agree to carry you)... but I haven't yet got a solid enough grasp on the concepts to start putting them in mechanical terms.

          Originally posted by Sandact6 View Post
          Any reason you dumped Raksha starting at Attribute 3 and removing their attribute cap at 8? I think I know the reason, but I'm curious.
          The reason is mindlessly following the other published splats and not remembering or bothering to look up previous' editions rules for Raksha character creation.

          Originally posted by Critian Caceorte View Post
          One question I have is about the Raksha equivalent to Ox-Body Technique. It grants -0 HL's equal to Stamina / 2, rounded up, which considering the lack of an attribute cap can become pretty ridiculous. Assuming a Solar Exalt and a Raksha both had Stamina 5, the Solar would get 1x -0 HL, 1x -1 HL, and 1x -2 HL, while the Raksha would just get 3x -0 HLs. That's a better value than Solars get, and it only escalates from there since a Raksha at character creation can extend their Stamina rating past 5. I'm not exactly an authority on the subject, but maybe you alter it a little to be a bit less powerful, perhaps even just granting -0 HLs equal to Stamina/2, rounded down. That would lower the curve just slightly enough that it wouldn't be as bad.
          Rounding up follows the pattern established by the published splats' versions of Ox-Body: Stamina 1-2 gets you one health level, Stamina 3-4 gets you two, and Stamina 5 gets you three. The differences come in where in your track those health levels fall. I figured that the Raksha, in having a different relationship to their bodies than any of the Exalted do, ought to get -0s – although now that I think about it, perhaps that should degrade with repeated purchases, as the Raksha binds themself to/identifies with their body more and more, so the first purchase gives -0s, the second -1s, the third -2s, the fourth -4s, and the fifth Incaps.

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          • #6
            Fair Folk not having excellencies is one of their defining traits. They are already as excellent as they can imagine themselves. reflected in their stats.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Braininthejar View Post
              Fair Folk not having excellencies is one of their defining traits. They are already as excellent as they can imagine themselves. reflected in their stats.
              When you phrase it that way, I find myself agreeing!

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              • #8
                Fair Folk totally had excellencies, they were just hidden in their assumption charms.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Anshu View Post
                  Yeah, I explicitly called that out. "Divide 12 dots among primary Attributes, 8 dots among secondary Attributes, and 4 dots among tertiary Attributes. Attributes may be raised higher than 5." (emphasis added)
                  Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                  Typically Fair Folk can take their Attributes and Abilities above five.
                  Emphasis added.


                  Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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                  • #10
                    Okay, I've removed the Excellency and tweaked some of the rules around Attributes and Abilities. To wit:

                    Step 3: Attributes

                    • Mark down one dot in each Attribute.
                    • Nobles divide 13 dots among primary Attributes, 9 dots among secondary Attributes, and 5 dots among tertiary Attributes; commoners divide 8, 6, and 4, respectively. Raksha may raise Attributes up to 8.
                    Step 4: Abilities

                    • Divide 28 dots among all Abilities. None may be raised higher than 3 without spending Bonus Points.
                    • Assign a specialty to each of five Abilities. Specialties that match an Intimacy add that Intimacy’s rating in dice instead of the normal single die. No more than two specialties can be identical.

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                    • #11
                      Okay, lemme go through the process and see if that sparks any more thoughts...

                      For the concept, I'm thinking a sort of hunter-king of a deep forest, with maybe a touch of the Green Knight, call him Lord Vertilac... so Defining Principle of "I am a mighty hunter" with a Major Principle of "I rejoice when pitted against challenging prey". He has Minor Ties of "his mount (affection)", "Lady Calítré (love)", "My forest (lordship)", and a Minor Principle of "Weakness disgusts me".

                      For his Attributes... as a hunter Physical should be his primary, and as a king Social should be secondary.

                      Of his Physical Attributes, Stamina is the least important, so take 3 dots off the top for Sta 4, leaving 10 to split between Str and Dex. He could do an even split for Str 6 and Dex 6, but I like the idea of Str 7 and Dex 5 better. Social Attributes could just be an even split of 4s down the board, but a 5/4/3 split feels better. Finally, in Mental Attributes, a 3/2/3 split; he's not stupid, but most of his points here are to support tracking and fighting.

                      Strength ••••••• (7)
                      Dexterity ••••• (5)
                      Stamina •••• (4)
                      Charisma ••••• (5)
                      Manipulation •••• (4)
                      Appearance ••• (3)
                      Perception ••• (3)
                      Intelligence •• (2)
                      Wits ••• (3)

                      In terms of Abilities, the critical ones are gonna be Awareness, Melee, and Survival for hunting, and Integrity, Presence, and Socialize for kinging; putting 3s in each of those leaves us with 10 left over. I imagine he's tough and a pretty good wrestler, so Resistance and Brawl, plus Ride and War for managing hunting parties.

                      Awareness ••• (on the hunt +4)
                      Brawl •••
                      Integrity •••
                      Melee ••• (challenging prey +3)
                      Presence ••• (being lordly +2)
                      Resistance ••
                      Ride ••• (his mount +2)
                      Socialize •••
                      Survival ••• (on the hunt +4)
                      War ••

                      I'll give him a Melee specialty in challenging prey, a Ride specialty in his mount (name tbd), Awareness and Survival specialties in being on the hunt and... a Presence specialty in being lordly. Each of those matches an Intimacy, meaning that when the specialty applies it adds dice equal to the corresponding Intimacy's rating.
                      Last edited by Anshu; 11-18-2020, 05:51 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Merits. He's got a magic spear and a wife Lady Calítré, his forest, and his court. Also gotta have a magnificent crown of antlers...

                        Ally ••• (Lady Calítré, wife)
                        Artifact ••• (Magic spear)
                        Demesne •• (forest)
                        Followers • (court)
                        Horns ••••
                        Imposing Features ••

                        Charms are of course the real sticking point. Five of the existing ones suit Vertilac well, but the other 10 I'll need to create on the spot. I'm thinking of changing Heart-Moving Blow and Heart-Piercing Dart to Withering-only and creating an upgrade Charm that allows it to strengthen an intimacy it just planted, followed by a Decisive-only charm that exploits the created Intimacy for extra damage; tentative names Repeated Blow Instruction and Heart-Tearing Strike. Some defensive Charms also would probably be good.

                        Let's give him Manifest Potential and Blessing of the Wyld, though I'm renaming it to Wyld Lord's Beneficence, and I'm considering a follow-on charm that lets him create/conjure a small unit of goblins, hounds etc. from the Wyld.

                        For Awareness and Survival, I have the seed of an idea revolving around Intimacies toward specific geographic features/areas (in Vertilac's case, his forest), but I want to do more than just adding dice

                        All the Wyld's a Stage Flesh-as-Clothing Attitude Flesh-as-Clothing Attitude Heart-Moving Blow Ego-Flensing Violation
                        Manifest Potential Placeholder Placeholder Repeated Blow Instruction Placeholder
                        Wyld Lord's Beneficence Placeholder Placeholder Heart-Rending Strike Placeholder


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                        • #13
                          Looks good.

                          (Maybe consider Archery.)

                          How strong are these characters meant to be?

                          Something like Elemental Protection Prana seems right.


                          Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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