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Let's talk about the Charms of ExEss

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  • I have yet to see a dev clarification for the confusion about how simple actions and charms work if they are not a typical attack (withering, decisive, gambit) or social influence action. This is the single biggest system issue / confusion I have, so if I want to use Essence right now I need to decide how I want to handle it at my table. What I've come up with is: Attack actions use the 8-step process, with one charm per step as per the RAW, so Excellency can't be used on step 2. Social actions are RAW with 4 steps. Other simple actions that don't have an explicit structure of steps (like build power, miscellaneous actions like picking a lock, etc.) are just treated as non-combat actions so any one charm can be used, ignoring step restrictions.

    Regarding defending against the environmental hazard from Volcano Cutter, my reading is that the wielder of the artifact uses their action and the evocation to create the environmental hazard, but it isn't an attack (ie, not withering or decisive) and the hazard damage isn't something that takes place within the step structure of the enemy's turn. They declare their action on step 1 but you aren't defending against it on a step 2 or anything. They just create the hazard and that is their action and their turn ends. Then the hazard takes over and affects the people in the area once per turn on their turn, and the character responds to that situation with a reflexive action at that point. So I think RAW is that you can use an Excellency to avoid that hazard, since the hazard damage is not occurring during some step of the enemy's action.

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    • There is one RAW case where you can use Excellency to defend against an attack, at least sort of. You can always choose to Clash against an attack. Instead of letting them attack on Step 1 and you use a Defense at step 2, it spins off an alternate structure where you both attack using Steps 1 and 3 (no one uses steps 2 and 4), and the highest attack wins. That way both of you can use an Excellency. Obviously limited since it consumes your next turn's action, but it can be a useful high risk/high reward option. And in some cases, it might be a safer option to relying on your Defense against some types of attacks - someone with a middle-range attack pool but a very large damage pool would be a great foe to clash against.

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      • Originally posted by Lindharin View Post
        There is one RAW case where you can use Excellency to defend against an attack, at least sort of. You can always choose to Clash against an attack. Instead of letting them attack on Step 1 and you use a Defense at step 2, it spins off an alternate structure where you both attack using Steps 1 and 3 (no one uses steps 2 and 4), and the highest attack wins. That way both of you can use an Excellency. Obviously limited since it consumes your next turn's action, but it can be a useful high risk/high reward option. And in some cases, it might be a safer option to relying on your Defense against some types of attacks - someone with a middle-range attack pool but a very large damage pool would be a great foe to clash against.
        Not sure this works, actually. I think you can only enhance clashes with Charms that specifically state as much, and the Excellency doesn't have that clause.


        Hey, check out my first original RPG, Post-Mortem, here: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/307131/PostMortem

        Or read my Exalted novella The Silence of Our Ancestors here: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...looded-Novella

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        • Originally posted by Dex Davican View Post
          Not sure this works, actually. I think you can only enhance clashes with Charms that specifically state as much, and the Excellency doesn't have that clause.
          Good catch and interesting point. Well, it lets you negate the enemy's use of an Excellency then; both of you are in the same boat at that point. Need to think about that a little more.

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