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  • Hello there. I didn't post here in ages, but I can as well do it now.

    So, I know that Exalted are supposed to be superior to mortals, but what it actually entails in a narrative sense? I mean, it's not like having a 21 dice pools has any real-world comparison, aside for the fact that's two times the amount of dice of the best mortal can theoretically assemble, so... do we have some comparison we can make to determine how badass is an Exalt?

    Maybe a reference for how difficult a particular action is? Like, what means that Colorful-Eyes-Of-Joy can trivially bypass a 6 difficulty on, I don't know, Performance?

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    • I think the best to realize this is not to take the Excellencies and Charms that add dices, but rather look for The Charms that ro "real things".

      If I consider a build with 15 Charms, this is what a single fresh Solar can do (it's not optimized, it just does some cool stuff) in a single character :


      - Fire an arrow that somehows hits a target 15 meters away, through a big wall with no holes, in the complete dead of the night with 0 light, and propulses the target 15 meters away through the sheer strength of the impact (3 Charms)

      - Casually jump 10 meters, from clotheslines to clotheslines, and never even risk to fall (2 Charms)

      - Easily see tiny details up to 100 meters, and hear enemies and creatures travelling through the ground around her (3 Charms)

      - Perform complete investigation in a scene in a handful of seconds, and be able to notice any lie given to her (3 Charms)

      - Totally adapt herself to crime-related faction by posing as a perfect criminal, spy or victim. Open literally any lock made by locksmith, as long as it is not imbued with magic, with a single touch. (3 Charms)

      -Master Terrestrial Sorcery, which gives you the ability to to a damn handful of things, like create new species, make a field always deliver a full harvest, or grants wings to someone (1 Charm)

      And as said, it's just 1 fresh solar, not even optimized.


      My homebrew (Leave comments if you want to help improve) : A quick recap of all the pools and stats for Quick Exalted 3E characters

      Comment


      • The book defines difficulty as (p185):

        1: Ordinary fare for heroes.

        2: Challenging tasks (for presumably heroes) under significant duress.

        3: Daunting Tasks for heroes.

        4: Daunting tasks for heroes under significant duress

        5: Near Impossible tasks for heroes.

        So by your definition of 6 performance, it would be, by extension, for a mortal hero, a near impossible task while under significant duress.

        Of course Exalts which invested in said task with an appropriate excellency (like say Lunar Trickster with trying to win your confidence) probably have their bread and butter near 3, and 6 is probably a daily thing they could do.
        Last edited by prototype00; 02-09-2020, 11:16 AM.

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        • Difficulty on a Performance roll is going to be harder, since Performance is usually rolled against Resolve. Being able to trivially hit 6 successes means you can almost guarantee success on an attempt to Inspire a typical dude (Resolve 1-2) with influence that directly contradicts his Defining Intimacy.

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          • Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
            Kelly was talking about Incarna worship in the First Age. Gravity didn't give you your Exaltation.

            I was responding to a suggestion that he'd never been worshipped much, and specifically in response to an argument for mercenary motives that grated significantly against my current emotional place.
            We know so little about the First Age and Primordial War now.

            We know "the gods of Heaven created champions to carry their power and glory, wage wars in their name, and fight the battles they never could [...] the gods gave the Exalted rule over all Creation [...] the gods of Heaven retired to Yu-Shan, the Celestial City, and left the world of man to the Exalted". And that's essentially it.

            There's nothing really to suggest the Celestines had a closer relationship with mortals in the First Age than they do in the Second. Or with their Chosen for that matter.

            It's entirely possible that a Dawn might have fought in the Divine Rebellion and never even heard the name "Sol Invictus". And that the mortals who settled in her domain offered the Bronze Tiger their prayers without even comprehending that she might have a patron sitting in heaven playing the Games of Divinity.

            Mortals still could have given thanks to their champions (alongside their field gods) to foster good mental health without worshipping the Unconquered Sun.

            Indeed the principle difference between the Ages is the prominence of the Zenith Caste, and The Golden Bulls are not named coincidentally -- even if the Hierophant isn't a canon character in 3E, there's a reason Sol turned his face from Creation and being taken for granted might play a part in that.

            Could the Sun have had a large Cult in the First Age as a result of gratitude? Sure, of course he could.

            Did he? I don't know. Maybe. Maybe not. I think all of Kelly's points are plausible. And whilst I sympathise with your emotional place, I really don't read Kelly's scenario as "mercenary" -- but I'm ill equipped to defend a statement I didn't make, so let's just say my inference is different and leave it at that.
            Last edited by JohnDoe244; 02-09-2020, 02:09 PM.


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

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Shapechanger View Post
              So, I know that Exalted are supposed to be superior to mortals, but what it actually entails in a narrative sense? [snip] do we have some comparison we can make to determine how badass is an Exalt?
              I realize you mentioned mechanical difficulty later on, but I wanted to focus on what you mentioned here, narrative difficulty, because I think it actually gives a better guideline for this kind of thing - the mechanics are, after all, merely an abstraction of what's "really" going on, and that abstraction can cause problems if it's scaled wrong. The difficulty levels that prototype00 mentioned are actually a good example of what I'm talking about - difficulty 1 is supposed to be regular fare for heroes, but given the way the system works, someone with 4 dice will pretty reliably pull that off (93% of the time). 4 dice is basically a typical professional level (2 dice from an average Attribute, and 2 dice from having "professional" level in the Ability). If that's all you need to achieve "hero" status, it kind of makes it less impressive. So, some more narrative guidelines about what Exalted and other heroes can achieve are useful, I think.

              I find three principles useful when defining the sort of thing that cinematic heroes (which are all of the Exalted, not just Solars, I'd note) can achieve. First, such people regularly do the difficult. This covers all the stuff that real people can actually do, but takes a great deal of both skill and luck to achieve. It's easy to find examples of this kind of feat - just search for things like "Like a boss" video compilations, or watch videos or read accounts that went viral for how awesome they are. The 10.0 gymnastics performance, the parkourista who crosses a complex city block in record time, the musician who does a flawless performance of a complex piece of music, and so on. In real life, those kind of things depend, as I said, on both skill and luck - to get that awesome video of success, there were probably 10 or 100 takes of failure, even though the person's skill wasn't any different. Or, the feat might have serious consequences that we don't see - a feat of strength that leaves someone with torn up muscles that means they'll be, at best, walking stiffly for weeks, and at worst laid up in bed or even permanently disabled. Cinematic heroes, on the other hand, can usually rely on getting that kind of peak performance every time, or at least when they need it, and don't suffer long-term consequences that will stop them from doing it again. Every routine the Supernal Performance dancer is that perfect 10.0 level, every sword stroke that Invincible Sword Princess makes is flawlessly executed, and so on.

              Second, cinematic heroes do the impossible but plausible. This is more the territory of movies and other fiction, rather than "real life" stunts. Basically, some things aren't possible to do, but they feel possible. We know that a real-life martial artist can break a board with her punch, so why can't one do the same to a stone wall? If an acrobat can leap 20 feet, why can't she leap 50 feet? Or 10 feet straight up? And so on. These sorts of feats tend to be exaggerations of stuff people can actually do, but exceed human limitations. They're also more dependent on certain cinematic conventions - some stuff becomes more plausible because we've seen it performed so often that we start to accept it. The floating leaps and "light walk"-style stunts of wuxia films are an example: because heroes who are supposed to be "just humans with good training" have done it so much, it's become an accepted part of the cinematic language we have, just a convention that cinematic heroes can do that.

              Finally, cinematic characters aren't bothered with trivial problems. In real life, everybody, even the most skilled, has to deal with a whole bunch of minor irritations and bad luck that can make us fail or just not succeed the way we want. Tony Hawk can still slip on a patch of grease he didn't spot and face-plant off his board, Miyamoto Mushashi can have his boat oar break mid-strike because it was cracked, Frida Kahlo can have an off day where she just isn't inspired and can't paint anything good. A cinematic hero gets to ignore all that. And they get to ignore a lot of other inconveniences too. Guns never seem to run out of ammo, because we assume that the cinematic gunslinger is just good enough that she only runs out of shots at a time where she doesn't have any clear shots anyway, and reloads off-screen. Tasks are never stymied just because of bad luck totally out of the character's control.

              So, those are the ideas I'd use to guide descriptions of how the Exalted do things. These can be applied even to "mundane" tasks. On any roll where an Exalt uses even a single die of Excellency, I like to describe the results in those terms. So, for example, say two smiths are shoeing a horse quickly, one of whom is a mortal, and the other is a newly-exalted Dragon-Blood. The difficulty is the same for both of them, and the dice pools are the same, after the DB adds a single die from the Craft Excellency to make up for slightly lower "natural" skill. Both succeed, but when describing the success, I'd mention that the mortal shoed the horse in the usual manner, with the usual problems, while the Dragon-Blooded did it slightly quicker, aligning the shoe with the hoof perfectly the first time, nailing the shoe in without ever having the hoof crack, and at one point, when the horseshoe was heating in the forge, reaching in and moving it to the hotter part of the fire by hand and just blowing on her fingers to cool them off afterwards, rather than have to go across the shop to get the tongs over on the bench. None of this would have a distinct mechanical effect, note - the job might be done faster, but not enough to take less than a scene, and the perfect fit wouldn't give the horse or rider a bonus. But the difference in description can still make a big difference in how the players perceive the actions. The Dragon-Blooded smith will feel like much more of a badass than the mortal, despite only rolling the same number of dice at the same difficulty.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
                I realize you mentioned mechanical difficulty later on, but I wanted to focus on what you mentioned here, narrative difficulty, because I think it actually gives a better guideline for this kind of thing - the mechanics are, after all, merely an abstraction of what's "really" going on, and that abstraction can cause problems if it's scaled wrong. The difficulty levels that prototype00 mentioned are actually a good example of what I'm talking about - difficulty 1 is supposed to be regular fare for heroes, but given the way the system works, someone with 4 dice will pretty reliably pull that off (93% of the time). 4 dice is basically a typical professional level (2 dice from an average Attribute, and 2 dice from having "professional" level in the Ability). If that's all you need to achieve "hero" status, it kind of makes it less impressive. So, some more narrative guidelines about what Exalted and other heroes can achieve are useful, I think.
                Standard fair for heroes. Like picking a lock or performing surgery.

                If your professional (non-heroic) lock-smith can't pick a lock 87% of the time, then you are going to have some serious problems practicing your profession. (I don't know where you're getting 93% from... are you counting tens as a single success twice? I use https://anydice.com/ for my probability calculations, Exalted dice are: "output 4d{0,0,0,0,0,0,1,1,1,2}".)

                A heroic character, a cinematic hero, essentially never fails. Catwoman throws (Dexterity 3 + Larceny 3) at the locked door of the Governer's Mansion -- she better be able to reliably pick that lock, or this is going to be a short movie. Catwoman trying to pick that lock in the dark (difficulty 2) only succeeds 81% of the time. And the professional lock-smith only succeeds 61% of the time, unless they're throwing Willpower at it.

                At the high end, our lock-smith has a 4% chance of picking a Difficulty 5 lock. That's not too bad, little less likely than Natural 20 territory. But the rules don't exist to facilitate Lock-Smith Simulator: Creation Edition. At some point granulatity breaks down and it defaults back to ST calling things. But with a Stunt and a point of Willpower, our Heroic Character succeeds 58% of the time: not quite a coin flip, but whilst Catwoman isn't getting her perfect 10.0 performance on every single roll, she's heroic enough to Wuxia the most difficult of implausible feats when the chips are down and the drama is high she CAN break into Wayne Manor.

                Originally posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
                So, those are the ideas I'd use to guide descriptions of how the Exalted do things. These can be applied even to "mundane" tasks. On any roll where an Exalt uses even a single die of Excellency, I like to describe the results in those terms. So, for example, say two smiths are shoeing a horse quickly, one of whom is a mortal, and the other is a newly-exalted Dragon-Blood. The difficulty is the same for both of them, and the dice pools are the same, after the DB adds a single die from the Craft Excellency to make up for slightly lower "natural" skill. Both succeed, but when describing the success, I'd mention that the mortal shoed the horse in the usual manner, with the usual problems, while the Dragon-Blooded did it slightly quicker, aligning the shoe with the hoof perfectly the first time, nailing the shoe in without ever having the hoof crack, and at one point, when the horseshoe was heating in the forge, reaching in and moving it to the hotter part of the fire by hand and just blowing on her fingers to cool them off afterwards, rather than have to go across the shop to get the tongs over on the bench. None of this would have a distinct mechanical effect, note - the job might be done faster, but not enough to take less than a scene, and the perfect fit wouldn't give the horse or rider a bonus. But the difference in description can still make a big difference in how the players perceive the actions. The Dragon-Blooded smith will feel like much more of a badass than the mortal, despite only rolling the same number of dice at the same difficulty.
                Brilliant, I love it.

                I used to do something similiar for the Second Excellency in 2E, but I think this is just perfect for any Charm use under 3E.
                Last edited by JohnDoe244; 02-09-2020, 02:06 PM.


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

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                • Originally posted by Kelly Pederson
                  The Dragon-Blooded smith will feel like much more of a badass than the mortal, despite only rolling the same number of dice at the same difficulty.
                  I'll be honest, in my experience the second part of the sentence is something that hardly every happens, so I don't feel any need to differentiate.


                  Anyway, a question from me.

                  Twilights can summon their spirit familiars with a few motes, and then banish them again. I always assumed this was from wherever the familiar was hanging out, but actually I just noticed it mentions the "formless essence" or something.

                  So do the spirit familiars just kind of not exist when the Twilight's not using them? So you don't have to keep track of them at all?
                  Last edited by The Wizard of Oz; 02-12-2020, 03:18 PM.


                  I run... Lunars: The Apocalypse! Exalted 3rd edition. Fimbulwinter is upon the world as an Ice Age begins, and only six young Lunar heroes have a chance of saving humanity.

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                  • Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
                    So do the spirit familiars just kind of not exist when the Twilight's not using them? So you don't have to keep track of them at all?
                    It is like elsewhere storage. You don't have to worry about the guest being kidnapped, assassinated, or otherwise distracted. They are safe and secure in that state.

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                    • Originally posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
                      Finally, cinematic characters aren't bothered with trivial problems. In real life, everybody, even the most skilled, has to deal with a whole bunch of minor irritations and bad luck that can make us fail or just not succeed the way we want. Tony Hawk can still slip on a patch of grease he didn't spot and face-plant off his board, Miyamoto Mushashi can have his boat oar break mid-strike because it was cracked, Frida Kahlo can have an off day where she just isn't inspired and can't paint anything good. A cinematic hero gets to ignore all that. And they get to ignore a lot of other inconveniences too. Guns never seem to run out of ammo, because we assume that the cinematic gunslinger is just good enough that she only runs out of shots at a time where she doesn't have any clear shots anyway, and reloads off-screen. Tasks are never stymied just because of bad luck totally out of the character's control.
                      What about botches?


                      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                      Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
                      https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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                      • Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
                        I'll be honest, in my experience the second part of the sentence is something that hardly every happens, so I don't feel any need to differentiate.


                        Anyway, a question from me.

                        Twilights can summon their spirit familiars with a few motes, and then banish them again. I always assumed this was from wherever the familiar was hanging out, but actually I just noticed it mentions the "formless essence" or something.

                        So do the spirit familiars just kind of not exist when the Twilight's not using them? So you don't have to keep track of them at all?
                        As Greyman said, yeah they are somewhere "like elsewhere". One of my player tried to argue that it was a narcissistic act of creating and deleting the existence of someone on command, but I see it more as "You send them to the nirvana where they are fulfilled and happy, and summon them back when necessary"


                        My homebrew (Leave comments if you want to help improve) : A quick recap of all the pools and stats for Quick Exalted 3E characters

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                        • Dumb question I think i've been doing wrong- can you pay motes to boost your parry without charms, like an excellency or something? I know there's full defense but i could swear there was a way to do this somewhere.


                          ..."But I've bought a big bat, I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me"

                          Message me for Japanese translations.

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                          • Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
                            Dumb question I think i've been doing wrong- can you pay motes to boost your parry without charms, like an excellency or something? I know there's full defense but i could swear there was a way to do this somewhere.
                            It's a function of the Dexteridy, Melee, Brawl, and Martial Arts Excellencies, yes. 2m gets you +1 Parry against 1 attack, stackable and subject to normal caps for whatever your Exalt type is.

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                            • Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
                              Dumb question I think i've been doing wrong- can you pay motes to boost your parry without charms, like an excellency or something? I know there's full defense but i could swear there was a way to do this somewhere.
                              Yes of course, it's 2 motes per 1 point of defense, with the usual limitation (can't raise it above 2*(Dex + Defense ability)/2 = Dex + Defense Ability

                              Edit : As sait prncss, it's restricted to your usual Excellency limitations, so my example is for Solars


                              My homebrew (Leave comments if you want to help improve) : A quick recap of all the pools and stats for Quick Exalted 3E characters

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by vwllss trnt prncss View Post

                                It's a function of the Dexteridy, Melee, Brawl, and Martial Arts Excellencies, yes. 2m gets you +1 Parry against 1 attack, stackable and subject to normal caps for whatever your Exalt type is.
                                Ok there it is. That's what I couldn't find, its just the math of excellencies. Thank you and thanks Chausse


                                ..."But I've bought a big bat, I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me"

                                Message me for Japanese translations.

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