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  • More Like Cynis Denovah AvaCOOL!

    I’ve loved this guy since I first started playing Exalted back in 2007, but I’ve never used him in an NPC as a GM or encountered him as a player. Has he showed up in any of your games? What happened to him?

    (Cynis Denovah Avaku, to be clear)


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  • #2
    Originally posted by Ranger_Lord View Post
    I’ve loved this guy since I first started playing Exalted back in 2007, but I’ve never used him in an NPC as a GM or encountered him as a player. Has he showed up in any of your games? What happened to him?

    (Cynis Denovah Avaku, to be clear)

    Well, i once made Cynis Denovah Azaro, a child of his that "turned monk" after a disastrous wyld hunt in a western isle where all his friends died.
    Neither his parents nor those of his dead colleagues were exactly amused with his curt messages and decision to cloister himself in the middle of nowhere, what lead to a number of interesting developments.
    Last edited by Baaldam; 12-26-2020, 10:31 PM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Ranger_Lord View Post
      I’ve loved this guy since I first started playing Exalted back in 2007, but I’ve never used him in an NPC as a GM or encountered him as a player. Has he showed up in any of your games? What happened to him?
      Anything in particular you liked about him? I mostly just remember him as the Fire Aspect whose killing of a young Eclipse Caste (and subsequent regret) while on a Wyld Hunt was a throughline for many 1e and 2e fictions.

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      • #4
        He's a sig character. One of the main characters in Aspect Book: Fire and a key 2E figure. He comes from a minor Cynis bloodline too insignificant to be part of the main three. No-one expected him to Exalt but his parents bankrupted themselves to give him a proper Dynastic education. He's married to an unExalted member of House Mnemon and desperately wants to elevate his family's status, restoring the Denovah name. Gold Faction Sids manipulate him into killing a young boy (the same age as his own child) who Exalted when trying to stop House Cynis selling drugs in his village. This causes him to rethink his life and Immaculate teachings about the Anathema... Just As Planned.

        He's a great hook for DB games about reforming a corrupt Realm and for Celestial games about patching things up with the Dragon-Blooded. I think the last time I used him was when RotSE was new. I don't have any particularly memorable stories to tell.


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

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        • #5
          When I ran a game back in the 1e days, because Avaku was the "example" DB character in the back of the corebook, we had a running gag of the PCs fighting clones of Avaku when I needed more enemies to round out a fight scene.

          (I know, I know. It seemed a lot funnier when I was 15 years younger.)

          One of the players swore to eventually find and take revenge on the real Cynis Avaku, but sadly the game never got that far. It would have been interesting for the players to discover that there was actual depth to his character.

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          • #6
            Avaku has the hair of an Akira Toriyama protagonist, an eyepatch and seems like a hot-blooded decent guy who is an underdog among Dynasts.

            As a character he is drawn with enough of a moral core and a level of doubts about the Realm that can put him on an interesting journey - he's not simply someone who objects to its society with no further scope to travel, or a character who defends its society with a blithe attitude. That seems pretty useful. (Or maybe I'm blinded by that cool anime hair? )

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            • #7
              Avaku's one of those Dragon-Blooded PCs who has this problem of being interesting in a way that's likely to be undermined by having too much to do with a sufficiently connected group of PCs.

              That 2e core comic in particular is an incentive for someone with a Solar PC to want to find and recruit him as a minion, but getting him to jump ship like that would move the Denovah Household from minor to actively disgraced.


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              • #8
                Originally posted by Lioness View Post
                Avaku's one of those Dragon-Blooded PCs who has this problem of being interesting in a way that's likely to be undermined by having too much to do with a sufficiently connected group of PCs.
                At least with a celestial or mixed one. Whole different story in a Dragon-Blooded game for sure.

                Little aside - anyone has suggestions on artifact armor and weaponry for him?

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                • #9
                  IIRC he has Orchalcum Khatars, the Red Jade Reaver Daiklave Kiss of Thunder, and Red Jade Articulated Plate (1E) or Red Jade Reinforced Breastplate (2E)? 2E also gave him a pair of Perfected Boots (a 1 dot Artifact if memory serves).
                  Last edited by JohnDoe244; 01-06-2021, 05:43 PM.


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

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                    IIRC he has Orchalcum Khatars, the Red Jade Reaver Daiklave Kiss of Thunder, and Red Jade Articulated Plate (1E) or Red Jade Reinforced Breastplate (2E)? 2E also gave him a pair of Perfected Boots (a 1 dot Artifact if memory serves).

                    Decided to hit the books to clear up the issue and found the following:

                    In his 1st version back in the 1e Corebook, the Jade Reaver Daiklave Kiss of Thunder was his only artifact, the Long Bow, Articulated plate and target shield he had with him being of the completely mundane sort. No hearthstones - or Khatar, image notwithstanding.

                    In Aspectbook: Fire (still 1e) - and the upgrade to Exalted: Dragon-Blooded version of the artifact background - the daiklave is suplemented with a reinforced jade breastplate and a fire pearl.
                    His aspectbook art has no Khatar this time.

                    Scroll of Exalts, that brings Avaku back in late 2e stats, replaces the Fire Pearl - that as artifacts go, is something of a dud to give to a fire aspect - with the pair of perfected boots mentioned. It also specifies Kiss of Thunder as a Red Jade Reaver Daiklave, what i find a strange choice for a weapon with such a name.

                    Ah, and the Statless Khatar is back (in his art) too! That thing should be Starmetal or outside fate for how much everybody keeps missing the damn thing!
                    Or maybe Kiss of Thunder can change between blades, that and exploring the name might make some interesting starting points for its evocation tree.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Baaldam View Post


                      Decided to hit the books to clear up the issue
                      Bless you.

                      I think we can assume (perhaps) that the Jade Breastplate is a reward for killing the Solar or equipment issued to him so he could kill the Solar (replacing the mundane articulated plate), and the Khatars might be the Solar's weapons torn from them during battle? Avaku doesn't actually use them, but carries them out of a sense of guilt, maybe? Something to hand over to Solar PCs if they befriend him.

                      Forget the Fire Pearl, that's just 1E being 1E. I'd say to forget the boots too (2E being 2E).

                      The unnamed armor doesn't strike me as having particularly interesting Evocations, especially if it is a new addition to Akavu's aresnal. It's certainly not central to his legend. Deserves a name though...

                      Kiss of Thunder as a Red Jade Reaver Daiklave seems fertile ground for Evocations though. I probably wouldn't go too eosteric with a transforming blade never pictured in art, and go for the direct, no nonsense approach of a Reaver, and the more fiery, less airy, side of lightning.


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

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                        Bless you.

                        I think we can assume (perhaps) that the Jade Breastplate is a reward for killing the Solar or equipment issued to him so he could kill the Solar (replacing the mundane articulated plate), and the Khatars might be the Solar's weapons torn from them during battle? Avaku doesn't actually use them, but carries them out of a sense of guilt, maybe? Something to hand over to Solar PCs if they befriend him.
                        It could go a number of directions as, truth be told, Avaku was written before there were rules for dragon-blooded and the armor and trinkets added pretty to upgrade him into what became dynast standards. Scroll of Exalts implies in passing they were gifts from House Cynis upon his graduation from the House of Bells, what ain't wow but is better than nothing, i guess.


                        Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                        Forget the Fire Pearl, that's just 1E being 1E. I'd say to forget the boots too (2E being 2E).
                        True for both, they are both trinkets rounding up his artifact point count. Any other trinket or none would count just as much.


                        Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                        The unnamed armor doesn't strike me as having particularly interesting Evocations, especially if it is a new addition to Akavu's aresnal. It's certainly not central to his legend. Deserves a name though...
                        That is kind of ironic in some way, since Avaku's armor and Khatar - he's always portrayed with one, not two - are very iconic elements of the character, while Kiss of Thunder, cool name notwithstanding, is just a bunch of stats and has never been shown in any art. The fact we don't get much on his armor is also reflective of how armor were some of the most workmanlike of artifacts in previous editions.

                        One thing that catches my attention on the armor is the presence of the "pentagram mon" of the Realm's legions emblazoned on the chest, what makes me think of it as a relic made in the Age of Sorrows and for it, with a tale tied in the centuries of chronicles of the Dynasty and its many wars of empire-building and keeping.

                        I'm tempted to run with it and make it "legion commander" armor, with Evocations based on boosting one's followers, in morale, resistance, defenses against elemental aura and so on. Maybe a capstone charm that gives +1 might to all troops already under the exalt's influence.

                        Also imagining it as a gift of a dying superior officer, an outcaste with no relatives to bequeat it, from the Sleeves of War campaign. Just a thought.


                        Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                        Kiss of Thunder as a Red Jade Reaver Daiklave seems fertile ground for Evocations though. I probably wouldn't go too eosteric with a transforming blade never pictured in art, and go for the direct, no nonsense approach of a Reaver, and the more fiery, less airy, side of lightning.
                        The transforming blade angle was a joke more than anything, but overall i'm tempted to just rewrite Kiss of Thunder as a Red Jade/Orichalcum Khatar, among other things because a piercing/punching/stabbing weapon seems much more in theme with thunder and lightning strikes imagery than a Reaver Daiklave, imho.
                        Last edited by Baaldam; 01-07-2021, 07:34 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Baaldam View Post
                          Whole different story in a Dragon-Blooded game for sure.
                          It depends. I've seen a lot of Dragon-Blooded games where PCs were absurdly well-connected due to the ease of taking a background/story merit to 5 dots in character creation.


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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Baaldam View Post
                            That is kind of ironic in some way, since Avaku's armor and Khatar - he's always portrayed with one, not two - are very iconic elements of the character

                            Red Jade/Orichalcum Khatar, among other things because a piercing/punching/stabbing weapon seems much more in theme







                            Huh, I never noticed that he only has one before... but you're right.

                            He does have a sword in one piece of artwork but that doesn't look like a Reaver Daiklave to me...


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

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Lioness View Post
                              It depends. I've seen a lot of Dragon-Blooded games where PCs were absurdly well-connected due to the ease of taking a background/story merit to 5 dots in character creation.

                              Well, my point is that interaction with a sworn brotherhood of dragon-blooded PCs definitely shouldn't undermine those elements that make him interesting as a character like inserting him in a circle made mostly of celestials tends to.

                              Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post








                              Huh, I never noticed that he only has one before... but you're right.
                              Truth be told, neither did i before checking him across the books.

                              Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                              He does have a sword in one piece of artwork but that doesn't look like a Reaver Daiklave to me...
                              Could even be a ghost fire blade for what little detail we get from the image.
                              But you looked much harder than me on the subject for sure.
                              Last edited by Baaldam; 01-07-2021, 08:58 AM.

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