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How do you run the Fair Folk?

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  • Katamari_Naneke
    started a topic How do you run the Fair Folk?

    How do you run the Fair Folk?

    Hey mates!
    I've been away a while, I hope you didn't miss me too much.

    I'm hoping to start a new game soon, and one of my players is keen to involve the Fair Folk in her backstory. That's great, I love them (in principle) but I've never used them before. They're a little daunting to me. But hell, they're pretty great, and they're real big on that intrigue I so adore, so why not? Maybe a game built around Wyld-Shaping technique would be fun.

    So please, tell me about your Fair Folk stories so I can get a handle on these terrifying creatures.

    Also, has anything been published on the Dreaming Sea yet?

  • Accelerator
    replied
    Originally posted by Blackwell View Post
    Raksha are not made of stories. They are made of math. Specifically, set theory. All this stuff about narrative and story-logic is what happens when their purity is tainted by proximity to Creation.
    Oh my.

    So you're saying they're the Cthulu entities from beyond Time and space in the Laundry Files?

    Leave a comment:


  • habitableexoplanet
    replied
    Originally posted by Blackwell View Post
    Raksha are not made of stories. They are made of math. Specifically, set theory. All this stuff about narrative and story-logic is what happens when their purity is tainted by proximity to Creation.
    This implies something very interesting about Ten Sheaves sacrificing his immortal life to oppose them...

    Leave a comment:


  • Blackwell
    replied
    Raksha are not made of stories. They are made of math. Specifically, set theory. All this stuff about narrative and story-logic is what happens when their purity is tainted by proximity to Creation.

    Leave a comment:


  • Wiwuno
    replied
    Measure of Hope Yes. You get me. I love the opportunity for the Raksha to express storybook logic and narrative themes above and beyond the constraints of reality and that tragic misunderstanding is a phenomenal tool for drama with PC's. It also allows me as the Story Guide to face my players with scenarios and environments that would normally be greatly out of place.

    Leave a comment:


  • Katamari_Naneke
    replied
    That's a lot to work with, Measure of Hope.

    Has anyone used the Unshaped in their games? How does the Gateway of Sundraprisha work - is it just a metaphor?

    Leave a comment:


  • Braininthejar
    replied
    The mutable reality thing reminds me of how in one Marvel comic, Beyonder had a rant on how he is all-powerful, so he has no idea how a cow should look like, because every cow he's ever met looked exactly as he had imagined.

    Leave a comment:


  • Measure of Hope
    replied
    I like the "Fair Folk as living narrative" interpretation because it arises quite naturally from their environment and circumstances. They are native to a mutable reality which they can shape like clay, yet they are social. In that environment, consensus reality is reality. The stronger your will, the more compelling your vision, the more others will accept it, the more stable and real it will become. This applies to themselves first and foremost. They 'are' because they will it so and the world is unable to deny that they exist. The Gallant Prince is gallant because he asserts that he is gallant, and backs it up with a good performance. The Ogre Princess breaks the curse placed by her Evil Stepmother and now she is the Beautiful Princess, and everyone agrees that this makes a good story, so it is true. Everyone goes around trying to assert their self image in everyone's eyes because otherwise their identity becomes subordinate to someone else's will, and they manoeuvre to increase their power and importance by spinning a story that captures everyone else in it. The story does not have to be to their advantage in the way a human would think of it. The Beautiful Princess is cursed to eternal slumber, which seems like a bad thing for her, but really she has set a plot hook so compelling that the Gallant Prince just has to go questing to rescue her to get in on that good story cred, thus increasing her standing and his. Multiple parties may collaborate for mutual gain even though the story places them at odds with each other. A nemesis may be as cherished as a beloved friend, because they offer the raksha opportunities to engage in grand events.

    How does this play out when the PCs get involved? A raksha they meet in their travels may decide that they seem like interesting people who will introduce many opportunities for interesting situations where they can play to their strengths, and start trying to wrap the PCs up in their drama. Maybe as a companion, maybe as a villain. Even if they're friendly and wish their companions well, they may not understand that the PCs don't want things to be interesting all the time. The Dawn is clearly a warrior type. He must want a chance to fight, right? So the raksha will pick a fight or manipulate people into attacking the Dawn. It's not just that he loves the drama, it's that he's trying to help. He's being his friend's violence wingman to help him get into memorable fights so he can show what a badass he is. It's what a fae warrior would want. The idea that there might be lasting consequences might not even occur to him, because in the Wyld, there aren't. If the party gets tired of his machinations and decides to turn on him, he might be excited to explore this exciting new dynamic with them, until the cold iron is drawn and he starts to wonder what he did wrong.

    Perhaps this wouldn't happen with a more experienced fae who has learned how to actually meet her friends' social needs and get what she needs narratively from them in a mutually beneficial way. Perhaps in time enough of those pesky can't-just-wish-them-away feelings that Creation-born engender will build up to give her a personality that is more than mere affectation - how terrifying and fascinating! But most fae that venture into Creation and interact with Creation-born will never get there.

    Of course, flip the script and the PCs could also be the ones getting it wrong. Consider this set-up: the Raving Villain has kidnapped the Beautiful Princess on her wedding day and is forcing her to marry him instead! Her real groom, the Gallant Prince, is currently battling many dangerous obstacles in order to rescue her, when the PCs run into him. He relates his tale because of course he does, he wants people to validate his gallantry and become part of his quest, increasing its scope and importance. Little does he realise that this is a PC party, and they proceed to skim over all of the obstacles, kill the Raving Villain, rescue the Beautiful Princess and return her to the Gallant Prince before he's finished cutting down the thorn hedge. Both of the surviving fae are aghast at this turn of events and become recurring thorns in the party's sides. Why are they so ungrateful?

    Quite simply, it was a mutually beneficial arrangement between all three parties, and now this group of Exalts has ruined everything. Here's the play. The Princess is kidnapped by one suitor and rescued by another, thus validating her status as an object of desire whom others will go to great lengths to obtain. The Prince gets to engage in heroics, validating his status as a hero. And the Villain gets to shock everyone with his audacity and cruelty, validating his status as a big bad scary guy. They were all in this together. And then the Prince's would-be adventuring companions upstaged him and rescued the girl for him, stealing his thunder. The heroes rescued the Princess and rudely didn't fall in love with her, undermining her status as the fairest of them all whom none can resist. And the poor Villain is dead, obliterated by the hostile causality Creation-born violence, all for the crime of giving everyone else a chance to build their legends along with his. The Exalts misread the situation, killed a guy who'd done nothing 'wrong' and spoiled everyone else's actual goals by taking the story at face value. It's a disaster.

    In summary, you might find raksha playing out scenarios where they react the way you would expect a human to react, but there are fundamentally different needs underlying their choices, and if you disrupt the script, they may not take it the way you expect. They might also misinterpret your needs and try to help in ways that are destructive. True malice requires an understanding that everybody is playing for keeps, which they don't automatically possess, but that doesn't make them less dangerous.

    Leave a comment:


  • CTPhipps
    replied
    Originally posted by Sunder the Gold View Post
    But I'm not off-topic.
    You don't get to determine who is on and off topic.

    So Russia definitely couldn't have stolen the 2016 election from Hillary Clinton through voter fraud?

    I bet Hillary's voters WISH she had demanded a full recount and audit. But she didn't fight it at all, even though she never stopped insisting the election was stolen from her.
    This is VERY much not on topic.

    Indeed, much of this post is off topic and derailling. Please leave thread and consider yourself given an infraction since a lot of this is utterly not about Exalted. If you argue or attempt to post here again you will be banned for a week.

    Thank you.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dex Davican
    replied
    Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
    Where's the Man with the Thistle-Down Hair, who is really genuinely fond of this person that was born into slavery and will think nothing of slaughtering people in pursuit of the knowledge of the name given him by the mother he never knew?
    The Man with the Thistle-Down Hair is an excellent example of a character that cannot and will not ever relate to humans. His fondness for Stephen isn't a complicating moral factor--he's a horror that forces his whims upon Stephen because Stephen has qualities he likes. He can be "genuine" in that he believes everything he states, but he can't approximate a genuine human friendship because he can't see things from Stephen's perspective at all. He's much more interested in projecting his own views of the world onto Stephen and moving Stephen around like a favored game piece.

    (Why the perspective that having a stance on one of the classic characters of American artistry is an odd thing to state? Won more Oscars than I have.)
    The juxtaposition of formal debate language with Bugs Bunny is really funny, is all.


    Originally posted by Sunder the Gold View Post
    But I'm not off-topic.

    I made sure to continue to talk about the Fair Folk. Alucard is the one who neglected to do so.
    This is a technicality. The hard swerve into modern political argument isn't on-topic, even if you also address some on-topic stuff in the same post. Alucard was trying to make a point about the topic, and you took that as a jumping-off point for an entirely different discussion.

    Please stop.

    Originally posted by Sunder the Gold View Post
    By that, do you mean "like the various kinds of spirits, Dragon Kings, and Mountain Folk"?

    Why aren't they?
    Other supernatural entities are, to different degrees, still recognizably people, but Ex3 has still benefited by not trying to balance around the idea that spirits, for instance, will eventually be PCs. I don't know how the devs will proceed, but it's probably best if spirits stay NPCs. Dragon Kings and Mountain Folk could go either way, though I won't be surprised if they get an Exigent-style writeup some day.

    The Fair Folk aren't moral actors for the same reason sharks aren't. They lack the judgment to make moral or immoral decisions. One could certainly make an argument from consequentialism that their actions have important moral consequences, but as far as intentions go, they're fundamentally alien. Even their preferences aren't based on comprehensible-to-humans motivations--the kindest raksha is not kind because they understand what kindness means to humans, but because it's an aesthetic/strategy that appeals to them for some reason. And as with many, many tales of the Fair Folk, that "kindness" will eventually harm people because the Fair Folk don't understand the intended purpose of kindness.
    Last edited by Dex Davican; 12-07-2020, 01:36 PM.

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  • Sunder the Gold
    replied
    Originally posted by Dex Davican View Post
    I can't speak for what the devs will do, but my hope is that they do not try to shoehorn the Fair Folk into being PCs in Ex3. They can be much stronger--as setting elements and as threats--if they're kept as NPCs.
    By that, do you mean "like the various kinds of spirits, Dragon Kings, and Mountain Folk"?


    We can argue over whether Bugs is a moral person, but he's indisputably a moral actor, and the Fair Folk aren't.
    Why aren't they?

    Leave a comment:


  • Sunder the Gold
    replied
    Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
    I dunno; in the old school cartoons, Bugs Bunny might just destroy you if you offered him offence.

    There's that one short in which he's furious that the Federal government places the bounty on rabbits as so low, and when the DoA official says it's because they're so harmless sets out to prove him wrong by just going on a rampage across the nation. That's where the gif of him sawing off Florida comes from, and I believe that episode also contains instances of him leveling mountains and redirecting rivers. I'm sure he closes up the Grand Canyon in it.
    That doesn't refute TheCountAlucard 's point at all.

    That's not predation, that's vengeance.

    The Monstars are committed unprovoked acts of aggression and consumption.

    Bugs Bunny in "Rebel Rabbit" feels that he has been injured and he is retaliating.


    Which is a valid route to take with the Fair Folk, who consider the creation of... CREATION, as an injury to themselves that they're trying to redress by "sawing off Florida" and other acts of destruction.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sunder the Gold
    replied
    Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
    Guys, I beg you, Off-topic.
    But I'm not off-topic.

    I made sure to continue to talk about the Fair Folk. Alucard is the one who neglected to do so.


    You could pitch an alien, outside threat as an unknowable horror. A feat of nature instead of a rational being.
    So what is it? A force of nature or a creature? It can't be both.

    My argument is that Fair Folk as creatures cannot avoid becoming predictable once you understand their needs. Forces of nature are even MORE predictable, because the inability to make choices means that they can never be tricked (by others or themselves) into taking actions that work against their own interests.

    Sure! You can make the mystery especially hard to solve. It can be practically impossible to solve (even though the Exalted regularly accomplish the impossible).

    The Storyteller can even count on the practical impossibility of solving the mystery as an excuse to not HAVE an answer to the mystery, to concentrate their effort on other things to try and provide their players the desired kind of play experience.

    But I don't like it when the developers do this and write a She Who Lives In Her Name Charm that says "Your mind has become alien and incomprehensible to human beings" but it doesn't actually do anything to force you into behaviors that are contradictory to the point of unpredictability, it just adds a bonus to your Guile against Read Intention actions.

    That's just cheap. That cheapens eldritch horror to window dressing.


    Originally posted by TheCountAlucard View Post
    My point wasn’t to change the topic to what is and isn’t communism - it was that I wasn’t entirely satisfied with the 1e Fair Folk book’s use of Looney Tunes as a suggested reference, because frankly the Looney Tunes aren’t quite so predatory.
    And my point isn't that Fair Folk and the Monstars aren't predatory.

    My point is that humans have been preying on each other forever, doing everything they can to take resources and freedom from each other without giving anything back.

    That's feudalism (and socialism). The subjugation of the weak majority by the strong minority, the centralization of authority and property rights in the minority and the denial of such from the majority.


    That's not capitalism, or else you need to invent a new word that means "voluntary exchange of goods or services between two consenting parties". It's not a capitalist system unless all participants are allowed ownership of their private property and have the means of personal defense to insist that their property cannot be taken away without their consent.

    A capitalist system is the ONLY system that allows for charity, because people have the freedom to give their property away of their own free will for nothing in return.

    A capitalism system doesn't include a "Greed Police" that comes to your house to punish you for acts of charity. (That's what feudalism / socialism does, because all property belongs to the state and the state will punish peasants for exerting control over the state's resources.)



    Originally posted by TheCountAlucard View Post
    It’s a little weird for a person who’s quick to call assholes who call themselves Christians “Pharisees,” yet take authoritarian governments who call themselves “Communist” at their word.
    Can you actually defend your position, or only attack to distract?

    But since I already accused your position again above, I can defend here the new position you attacked:

    Whereas "true communism has never been tried", real Christians actually exist. I can provide a list of martyrs who suffered and died rather than violate their principles for their own self-interest.

    Furthermore, Christianity isn't about pretending humans can be trusted with power. Christianity embraces the concept of human corruptibility.


    As for any talk of accountability, all that went out the window when the folks on top decided to make rules allowing them to decide how or even if your vote counts.
    So Russia definitely couldn't have stolen the 2016 election from Hillary Clinton through voter fraud?

    I bet Hillary's voters WISH she had demanded a full recount and audit. But she didn't fight it at all, even though she never stopped insisting the election was stolen from her.

    Leave a comment:


  • DrLoveMonkey
    replied
    Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
    This.

    I like the idea of playing a fae creature. I do. I loved Changeling The Dreaming. I never actually played a fae in Exalted and Graceful Wicked Masks was not useful to me as ST.

    Fae are interesting. They can be used to tell interesting stories. But they're stronger if bespoke to the needs of the story being told. I'd love a sourcebook about using the Raksha as NPCs. Actual PC rules? No interest.
    Also Exalted has frequently been almost aggressively anti-storyteller. With not a lot of support and in third edition even getting rid of the storyteller section of the splat books and corebook. It would really suck if the fair folk were made into yet another PC splat that storytellers had to hack into NPCs.

    Of course with some books on the horizon for more creatures and a storyteller guide coming that’s changing a bit, but there’s a lot of ground to make up too.

    Leave a comment:


  • Accelerator
    replied
    As someone who hasn't read masters of jade and can't bear to look at slavery, what's wrong with that statement?

    Leave a comment:

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