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  • Dataweaver
    started a topic Isekai Exigents

    Isekai Exigents

    I was originally thinking of this as a possible interpretation of the Getimians; but I think I prefer it more as a “setting hack”. The idea here is that there are Exigents that come from… somewhere else. Not the Wyld; not the Underworld, nor Malfeus. Not Autochthonia. Not anywhere adjacent to Creation. They have been summoned to Creation from Another World.

    The worlds that the Isekai Exigents come from are extremely varied; as a starting point, any of the Shards from the 2e supplement Shards of the Exalted Dream are possible “origin worlds” for the Isekai Exigents. So are possible futures of the setting (very likely distant futures, far enough in the future that it might as well be another world). If the notion that the World of Darkness is a possible distant future of Creation holds, then that's another source for Isekai Exigents. Or any other world that the Storyteller wants to allow: as an onyx path fan, my own preference would be to prioritize worlds described in other Onyx path gamelines, like The Chronicles of darkness, the Trinity continuum, or Scion. But even the likes of pugmire or Cavaliers of Mars are possibilities. And there's nothing restricting you from “Isekai”ing other properties of you so choose. Anything goes.

    That said, the world the isekai exigent comes from only matters so much; it's the character's past, not her present or future (probably). And the details of the world she came from only matter to the extent that they affected her before she was summoned to Creation. And isekai exigent who came from the World of Darkness or the Trinity Continuum but never encountered any of the aspects of those worlds that differentiate them from the real world might as well have just come from the real world.

    The act of summoning an Isekai Exigent also tends to have the effect of... changing it. It's basic nature remains more or less same; but this can be used to empower someone who was perfectly ordinary in the world that he or she came from, or it can be used to take someone who was already empowered and make some changes to the manifestations of those powers. This latter can be used, for instance, to “rewrite” a character from another gameline Creation.

    System-wise, Isekai Exigents work just like regular Exigents; they differ only in terms of where they came from, and thus the kinds of stories you tell using them. They're strangers in a strange land, bringing an outsider perspective to the setting without necessarily having an inhuman mindset. In fact, the default assumption that the source genre goes with is “an ordinary person from a mundane world (usually ours) gets thrust into a world of fantasy”. I just don't see any reason to limit the concept to just that. That said, their Exigency should reflect their homeworld, even if they were perfectly ordinary before they were summoned: a person summoned from the Trinity Continuum might have an Exigency that resembles a psion, nova, or Talent, for instance, even if he or she was a baseline before being summoned. Someone who was summoned from the World of Darkness might acquire an Exigency that mimics a vampire, werewolf, mage, etc., even if the new arrival had nothing to do with the supernatural before being summoned.

    By default, the connection to the character's homeworld is one way and one-off. If you're interested in a cross-world game, though, it might be possible for variants of the original summoning ritual to exist that can use the presence of an Isekai Exigent to open a dimensional gateway to her world. Obviously, if you want her to stick around and she wants to go home, such portals should be difficult to come by, surfing the role of a macguffin; or they should be one way, capable of bringing things over from her world but not sending things to it.



    With that in mind, I'd like to develop this thread by posting sample Exigencies that mimic character types from other games, but done in a way that they work within the framework of Creation. Top priority would be WoD-inspired Exigencies, given the never-formally-denied connection that exists between Creation and the World of Darkness. Possibly also develop some “Isekai Sorcery” that specializes in interacting with other worlds, for those gaming groups that want such a thing — again, with an eye toward keeping it more or less in line with the various Sorceries that already exist in Creation.

    That's it for now. Thoughts?

  • Yukiartic
    replied
    Testing Again

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  • webkilla
    replied
    Originally posted by pcontop View Post
    I have this crazy idea that the bureaucracy outside bureaucracy of Creation would be made of anthropomorphic Shinmas. The Shinmas, while not existing all that much inside creation, exist pretty concretely outside it, and they are actually pretty nice guys to meet. They do answer the many questions that the soon-to-be Exalted do, and do their basic orientation on Creation. Unfortunately, Issekai Exalted can only meet them on their way in, as the Shinma exist just conceptually inside. Many are the Issekai that regret not making the right questions before entering...

    This will only work if the shinma your isekai solar meets is a pretty young lady who gets easily flustered, who for some strange reason has to accompany the solar into creation

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  • pcontop
    replied
    I have this crazy idea that the bureaucracy outside bureaucracy of Creation would be made of anthropomorphic Shinmas. The Shinmas, while not existing all that much inside creation, exist pretty concretely outside it, and they are actually pretty nice guys to meet. They do answer the many questions that the soon-to-be Exalted do, and do their basic orientation on Creation. Unfortunately, Issekai Exalted can only meet them on their way in, as the Shinma exist just conceptually inside. Many are the Issekai that regret not making the right questions before entering...

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  • Citadel97501
    replied
    Do we actually have an Exigent book yet as I would totally steal this idea

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    It's not that they can't be Solars, Lunars, Sidereals, or other types of Exalts; as I said in my last post, they effectively can — though technically, an “Isekai Solar” won't technically be a Solar, as his Exaltation comes either from his old world or from the Psychopomp, not from Creation's Unconquered Sun; and if the “Isekai Solar” was summoned, not reincarnated, he'll exist outside the Loom of Fate. Sand even if he's reincarnated into Creation, his Exaltation still comes from outside Creation; which means that it stands a good chance of not providing precisely the same benefits that a “native Solar” would have. For example:

    Another thing to consider is the possibility that an Isekai Exigent from the modern world can bring in innovations that people native to Creation have never dreamed of. The Appendix in Shards of the Exalted Dream gives a good starting point in this respect, with a focus on Driving, Firearms, and Lore (a.k.a., computers); but other Abilities might be given overhauls or twists to represent what someone with modern sensibilities might be able to do with them, such as Bureaucracy, Investigation, or Medicine. The Isekai Exigent might even be able to bring some modern technology into Creation; or the might bring in some modern concepts that tweak what his Charms can do.

    In the source material, I've seen an Isekai Assassin employ sniper rifles and orbital bombardment, and an Isekai Soldier arm up with pistols, grenades, a HMMWV, and even a submarine when the situation warranted. I've seen an Isekai Scholar revolutionize Lore (through her knowledge of books, rather than computers; which shows how you don't have to go all in into modern technology to radically transform a fantasy-esque setting) and an Isekai Noble use his modern understanding of Bureaucracy to rebuild a kingdom on the verge of ruin. Just about the only kind of Isekai'd character which I haven't seen bringing modern sensibilities into a fantasy world has been the Priest.

    Personally, I would lean into the notion of an Isekai Exigent bringing modern notions into Creation; it's one of the main reasons to bring someone in from the modern world.
    Last edited by Dataweaver; 02-17-2022, 03:10 AM.

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  • AnubisXy
    replied
    I ran several games with that premise, or Exalted/World of Darkness crossovers back during 1st edition. Some of the original Exalted source inspiration, such as Vision of Escaflowne or Magic Knights Rayearth had this isekai concept don't and center. One of the biggest things you're likely to encounter is players wanting to recreate modern technology (guns, cars, airplanes) in Exalted, possibly even using things like combustion engines or gunpowder in order to bypass the need for Essence. I think there's room for "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" feel, but you should decide before the game starts how willing you are to let players run with that.

    Now modern technology like guns probably won't have much of an impact on Exalted vs Exalted combat (to paraphrase Grabowski, "If you can dodge a war god's spear thrust, you can dodge abullet just fine.") But that could have amajor impact on mass combat and the setting if people are driving around in tanks and humvee's blowing Wyld barbarians up. You might want to take a look at the Shards of the Exalted Dream for 2nd edition, which had a "modern Exalted" setting for some ideas.

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  • CaptOtter
    replied
    I've been thinking about running an Exalted 3e game where the Circle is made up of individuals isekai'd from a nominally mundane world (i.e., basically our world.) I'd be curious to know, whether anyone has actually moved ahead with executing this concept, and if so, what if any tips would you have for someone looking to wade in. Second, is there any particular reason anyone can think as to why isekai'd character would necessarily have to be Exigents, or why they couldn't be Solars (or Lunars, etc.)?

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  • Critian Caceorte
    replied
    So, just thought of something for a Vampire Exigent in Exalted Essence. Obviously this would work different in 3e, and kind of trips on the toes of other powers, but I figure it's a universal enough trait among Vampires for it to work as an Advantage here:

    Renewing the Corpse: The Vampire Exigent can pay up to Essence motes, once per scene, in order to heal that many health levels of damage. Vampire Exigents DO NOT heal damage normally.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    Also: it probably goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway. There's a restriction on the creation of Exigents that you can't duplicate all of the capabilities of an existing type of Exalt because, well, then you'd just be making an Exalt of that type. That restriction doesn't apply to the Isekai Exigents: it you decide to play a Solar refugee from Gunstar Autochthonia, you're still technically an Isekai Exigent even if your capabilities are virtually identical to a native Solar.

    Though unless you were reborn into creation, probably aren't exactly the same as a native solar: from my last post, you exist outside of fate. With that in mind, there should probably be an option for trade that represents existing outside of fate being something that you can get in addition to the usual stuff that being an exigent gives you. That makes it doubly important that such status be a mixed bag; but that also probably doesn't need to be said. (Of course, if you're a Getimian from a “Gunship Autochthonia” world, no such stacking would be needed.)

    Note that while this is technically a violation of the “no Twice Exalted” rule, I think it's justifiable in that you're not actually stacking different kinds of Exaltations on top of each other, nor are you undergoing a radical makeover from what you used to be.
    Last edited by Dataweaver; 06-03-2021, 09:49 AM.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    For what it's worth, the minimal impact approach isn't just to avoid unexpected consequences. By leaving the Psychopomp undefined beyond a name, I leave you full freedom to define the Psychopomp however you need it to be. So in the case of your suggestion, the Psychopomp is whoever it was who decided to bring someone in from another world to break open the Jade Prison. (I really like that idea, BTW.) And a gaming group that wants to go nuts with linking other worlds to Creation could go into great depth as to what the Psychopomp is, how it operates, and what its goals are.

    For instance, you could present it as a bureaucracy similar to Yu-Shan; but instead of being tasked to maintain Creation, the Psychopomp is tasked with maintaining the balance between the various worlds. And when someone is Isekai'd, he or she might meet a god from this bureaucracy who explains the basics of what's happening before sending him or her along to Creation. Or not; that bureaucracy might be every bit as dysfunctional as Yu-Shan is — and, if you want, Yu-Shan might even be part of it, the part that manages Creation.

    Or not. Unless your group wants to make a big deal of such things, none of the above matters in the slightest; and you can just say “Chosen of the Psychopomp” and leave it at that.

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  • LordHeru
    replied
    Dataweaver so instead of quoting both your posts can I just say, yeah, awesome stuff. Like so much potential there. So much potential.

    While both born in this world but from somewhere else and out of nowhere manifesting in Creation are good, I think in this case I would go more manifesting out of nowhere. The out of fate element sounds cool and totally game worthy.

    I also like the whole minimal change in this case for all that I see the potential in having it so his appearance was a side effect maybe of certain works to hide the actions to let the Jade Prison open.

    Such a huge potential here. So much fun could be had.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    Originally posted by Stephen Lea Sheppard View Post
    Chosen of Truck-kun?
    Part of the reason why I decided to go with the Psychopomp is it that term is used to refer to a being that conveys people's Souls to the next life. And a lot of isekai transfers the heroes to their new world by means of having them die in the old world. Thus, Truck-kun.

    That said, there's also the option of someone being summoned from another world while still alive. “Psychopomp” still works, though a bit less so. Not enough less so for me to worry about it.

    That said, that still leaves us with effectively too kind of isekai exigents: the reincarnated and the summoned. The frankly, the difference has less to do with whether or not they died and more to do with how they arrived. The reincarnated are kind of like the reborn from mummy the curse: they were born and grew up in Creation; it's just that they always had memories of another world from the moment of their birth. Typically, they have also always been Aware of Essence, and have always had their exigency. This can potentially lead to very strained upbringings, as raising a child who has access to the powers of essence can be quite nerve-wracking.

    But at least they are within the web of fate. The summoned simply appeared out of nowhere one day, fully grown. They are not part of Creation in any meaningful sense. When creating one of these, you should take a game trait that represents being outside of fate. This is where the original notion of them being something like the Getimians comes in.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    Originally posted by LordHeru View Post
    This said if someone said to me 'so I am thinking of an alternate Creation where some force is pulling certain heroes from other worlds into it to maybe stimie the Great Curse' and then introduced me to the potential of the Getiam and Exigent and such, yeah I can totally see this. Especially if I was able to create the caste and the aspects and the nature of things my character might be able to access. So yeah, the idea in that sense is quite cool and very much developing worthy. So I look forward to reading more ideas about this.

    Soo yeah I just had the idea that in this version of Creation the Jade Prison has yet to be broken, and in fact, is completely unbreakable by those whose presence is in fate - the whole 'no man can kill me' and 'I am no man'. Which is why some mysterious force managed to reach out into the depths of existence and pull some people into Creation. Maybe they get a message to sort of push them towards opening the Jade Prison but beyond that act the group has free will to do what they want. Or maybe the process of bring them into Creation is what broke the Jade Prison.
    For what it's worth, I have a tendency to go for “minimal impact” in my game hacks, on the premise that the less you change, the fewer unintended consequences there will be. In the case of the Isekai Exigents, the “minimal impact” setting would be one where whatever Isekai Exigents are in the player group are probably the only Isekai Exigents in all of Creation. That's also in keeping with the source material, which tends to assume that whichever visitor from another world that the story happens to feature is the only one. (Of course, the source material also has a disturbing tendency for the Isekai'd hero to be a Mary Sue; but we don't have to go that far in borrowing from it.)

    Even when there are more than one, they have a tendency to have been summoned together, or spread out over generations. That's why when I was talking about dreaming style Changeling, I commented that there aren't likely to be enough for there to be any sort of society of them.

    Recently, there have been a few anime that feature worlds where Isekai'd individuals are more common; common enough that they're a known phenomenon to the world's elites. That's more frequent than I'd like, personally; though I could definitely see Sidereals being able to identify them for what they are, more or less.

    As for who Chose them, it has to be someone who transcends the world of Exalted. As such, I'd probably go with the “completely unknown hypothetical entity or entities between the worlds”; I'll probably just refer to it as “the Psychopomp”, and leave everything else about it undefined. This is part of the same “minimal impact” approach I mentioned earlier.

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  • Stephen Lea Sheppard
    replied
    Chosen of Truck-kun?

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