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  • #31
    Heaven Will Not Save You - It's not technically canon anymore, after Glories did enormous retcons to the highest gods, but the Incarna really ARE jerks from a mortal perspective. The Sun's Motivation is not "Defend Creation" anymore, not since he gave up that mantle to ascend to the throne of Heaven and cast down his makers. There is no utopian solution to the world's woes by convincing the Most High to once more take up their duties; they risked everything through war with the Primordials to escape those duties, that yoke is one they will not return to, and to their eyes that responsibility now falls completely to humanity and the Exalted. During the Great Contagion and the invasion of the Fair Folk, Heaven shut its doors; their policy is fairly clear on this sort of thing. Similarly, things like the Aerial Legion are changed so that there is no divine cavalry coming to save the day either. This keeps the focus on Creation's heroes.

    The Golden Lord of An Teng - We appropriated most of the Glories write up for the Sun and gave it to the Golden Lord instead. He loves the Solars he mentored and judged, but is deeply disappointed in their actions from the First Age; their return will bring doubt to his decisions following the Usurpation. His powers are fueled by Virtues that he has (mostly) long since compromised in his dealings with the Bronze Faction, who installed him as patron god of An Teng long ago to take the place of the mad Solar God-King they had removed (classic Sidereal patch fix, etc) and keep the southwest from falling apart.

    [b]Linowan Terrestrials[/i] - Our Linowan nation has vibrant Terrestrial Exalted bloodlines that can trace their lineage back to Shogunate bureaucrats who fled the Northeast. Without the raw military might of the Seventh Legion, they interbred with the river-tribes instead of dominating them as serfs. This fixes some issues with the Halta/Linowan forever-war where the Haltans have essentially every advantage up to magical assistance from the Fair Folk in their raiding parties; now the Linowan have a few hundred Exalted to tip the scales back to balanced and explain why the Haltans accepted desperate alliance with the Bull. It also adds more Outcaste bloodlines to the map, always a good thing.

    Origins of Sorcery Schools - Basically, the many sorcery schools reflect the paradigm of the various Primordials that had a hand in the making of Creation. Ancient would-be sorcerers sought out Autochthon and learned his ways, and though they were few in number they formed the school that raised the first factory-cathedrals and developed the principles of artifice. Their legacy is the lost Devonian school of magic; what remains of it survives as the kinetropics of Valkhawsen in Lookshy. Salina's school hails from the teachings of Gaia, and through the Great Working of her college did they learn to sing the song of the shinma once more, just as the mythic Titans did at the founding of the world. Silur's school, regarded as the most traditional, is the closest we have to Brigid's original teachings. The demon Mara figures in the myth of the Mother of All Spells, a demon closely linked to the Ebon Dragon, so one might suppose it is the Dragon's teachings that form the philosophy behind the Silurian school. In truth the Ebon Dragon is loathe to part with his own secrets, so he gave the Exalted the keys to Elloge's sorcery instead.

    Ten Thousand Dragons - This is one of those areas where Exalted authors use words and phrases but assign them a meaning in-setting that utterly contradicts their historical usage (Mandate of Heaven, helots, cadet house, Shogunate, etc). "Ten thousand" is a euphemism for "a very high number" in Chinese. When Exalted speaks of there being ten-thousand Dragon-Blooded, it is not a literal figure or even an awkward approximation. The Dynasty has more than 10k Exalts, and the Realm has a great deal more when factoring in the patrician clans, minor Houses, outcastes within the Legion and the Immaculate Order. Lookshy, the Threshold "cadet houses", the Forest Witches, the Linowan, all add up to a great many more than ten thousand.

    The Great Prophecy - Isn't a single prophecy, but the culmination of a young Sidereal scholar's work in taking the myriad projections from ten thousand prophecies and trying to peace together a unified theory for what was steering Creation towards disaster. Yes, that scholar is Chejop Kejak, whose efforts would see him eventually ascend to head of the caucus that decided for the Usurpation.

    Sidereal Great Curse - Is a mechanical thing like from 2e, where they gain Limit and Break by choosing a course of action that matches with their Maiden's purview. Things like Kejak deciding to hide the Sidereals' crimes instead of facing judgement for them, which ended up fueling a great deal of the resentment the gods feel towards Heavenly law. Sidereals are not magically stupid nor prone to groupthink; in fact, they are deeply factionalized in an office-bureau we-all-still-have-to-work-here kind of way.



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    • #32
      Originally posted by Shinjo View Post
      Heaven Will Not Save You - It's not technically canon anymore, after Glories did enormous retcons to the highest gods, but the Incarna really ARE jerks from a mortal perspective. The Sun's Motivation is not "Defend Creation" anymore, not since he gave up that mantle to ascend to the throne of Heaven and cast down his makers. There is no utopian solution to the world's woes by convincing the Most High to once more take up their duties; they risked everything through war with the Primordials to escape those duties, that yoke is one they will not return to, and to their eyes that responsibility now falls completely to humanity and the Exalted. During the Great Contagion and the invasion of the Fair Folk, Heaven shut its doors; their policy is fairly clear on this sort of thing. Similarly, things like the Aerial Legion are changed so that there is no divine cavalry coming to save the day either. This keeps the focus on Creation's heroes.
      I agree that "wake up dad" is not a goal I want to encourage in Solars. I accomplish the same goal by essentially deciding that Incarnae aren't jerks... or anything else all that human. They're absolutes, and if they are doing something, it's because their nature is to do that thing, and no other. Glories was cool, but I never saw the need for humanity and drama among beings designed to be removed from the action.

      Originally posted by Shinjo View Post
      [b]Linowan Terrestrials[/i] - Our Linowan nation has vibrant Terrestrial Exalted bloodlines that can trace their lineage back to Shogunate bureaucrats who fled the Northeast. Without the raw military might of the Seventh Legion, they interbred with the river-tribes instead of dominating them as serfs. This fixes some issues with the Halta/Linowan forever-war where the Haltans have essentially every advantage up to magical assistance from the Fair Folk in their raiding parties; now the Linowan have a few hundred Exalted to tip the scales back to balanced and explain why the Haltans accepted desperate alliance with the Bull. It also adds more Outcaste bloodlines to the map, always a good thing.
      Yeah, I think a lot of nations (Coral, Linowan, Gem, etc.) should really have either a vibrant Outcaste community or some other source of supernatural aid to explain why they're so strong... and, for that matter, why they didn't get taken over by a small band of Outcastes or something ages ago. Linowan in probably the silliest, though, since their rivals have elder Lunars on their side.

      Originally posted by Shinjo View Post
      Ten Thousand Dragons - This is one of those areas where Exalted authors use words and phrases but assign them a meaning in-setting that utterly contradicts their historical usage (Mandate of Heaven, helots, cadet house, Shogunate, etc). "Ten thousand" is a euphemism for "a very high number" in Chinese. When Exalted speaks of there being ten-thousand Dragon-Blooded, it is not a literal figure or even an awkward approximation. The Dynasty has more than 10k Exalts, and the Realm has a great deal more when factoring in the patrician clans, minor Houses, outcastes within the Legion and the Immaculate Order. Lookshy, the Threshold "cadet houses", the Forest Witches, the Linowan, all add up to a great many more than ten thousand.
      Wait is that not canon? Wow, the way my little assumptions can work their way into my views of things can be scary, sometimes...


      "For me, there's no fundamental conflict between really loving something and also seeing it as very profoundly flawed." -- Jay Eddidin

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      • #33
        Originally posted by Shinjo View Post

        [b]Linowan Terrestrials[/i] - Our Linowan nation has vibrant Terrestrial Exalted bloodlines that can trace their lineage back to Shogunate bureaucrats who fled the Northeast. Without the raw military might of the Seventh Legion, they interbred with the river-tribes instead of dominating them as serfs. This fixes some issues with the Halta/Linowan forever-war where the Haltans have essentially every advantage up to magical assistance from the Fair Folk in their raiding parties; now the Linowan have a few hundred Exalted to tip the scales back to balanced and explain why the Haltans accepted desperate alliance with the Bull. It also adds more Outcaste bloodlines to the map, always a good thing.

        Ten Thousand Dragons - This is one of those areas where Exalted authors use words and phrases but assign them a meaning in-setting that utterly contradicts their historical usage (Mandate of Heaven, helots, cadet house, Shogunate, etc). "Ten thousand" is a euphemism for "a very high number" in Chinese. When Exalted speaks of there being ten-thousand Dragon-Blooded, it is not a literal figure or even an awkward approximation. The Dynasty has more than 10k Exalts, and the Realm has a great deal more when factoring in the patrician clans, minor Houses, outcastes within the Legion and the Immaculate Order. Lookshy, the Threshold "cadet houses", the Forest Witches, the Linowan, all add up to a great many more than ten thousand.
        I also have something similar to this Linowan headcanon! As to the "10K Dragons" thing...pretty sure that IS already canon. What gives you the idea that it's not?

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        • #34
          Originally posted by Chejop Kejak View Post
          Yeah, I think a lot of nations (Coral, Linowan, Gem, etc.) should really have either a vibrant Outcaste community or some other source of supernatural aid to explain why they're so strong... and, for that matter, why they didn't get taken over by a small band of Outcastes or something ages ago.
          It is not desirable to portray all national strength as deriving from Exalted presence, or that all nations inevitably fall directly under some Exalts.

          Originally posted by Chejop Kejak
          Linowan in probably the silliest, though, since their rivals have elder Lunars on their side.
          Nor to portray the idea that the involvement of elder Celestials makes any given issue a done deal.


          I have approximate knowledge of many things.
          Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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          • #35
            Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
            It is not desirable to portray all national strength as deriving from Exalted presence, or that all nations inevitably fall directly under some Exalts.

            Nor to portray the idea that the involvement of elder Celestials makes any given issue a done deal.
            There is some truth to this. Certainly, I like to keep a nation or two almost entirely "mundane" in their leadership, for setting diversity. But, in general...

            Well. I am sure we've all seen this argument unfold many times, so nobody needs to bored by it. But when a moderately-focused young Outcaste can regularly exceed the greatest mortal ever born at feats such as statecraft, oratory, and finding good underlings as well as combat, and they live for hundreds of years, you only need one to come to a region every one or two centuries to have an unbroken chain of Terrestrial rulers with huge advantages over any mortals. And that's leaving aside the benefits to a ruler in Creation when they have a little clout in dealings with local Gods and Elementals.

            If a nation with major regional power doesn't have Essence-users on top, I think that should be making a strong statement about the locale in question (for example, Mount Metagalapa was a population without much Blood of the Dragon, isolated for centuries so no outside Essence-users could conquer it), rather than being treated as the default.


            "For me, there's no fundamental conflict between really loving something and also seeing it as very profoundly flawed." -- Jay Eddidin

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            • #36
              I have a fun chart that describes the Celestial embodiment of each of the Primordials. Auto, for example, is kinda a metal-silver pinball moon! His 'phases' (similar to moon auspices) had the sphere opening up to reveal a cylon eye and other such weirdness. I actually went into great depth with this. At the finale of our game, the Alchemical group was able to crush a master gremlin in the tectonic plate movements when they properly anticipated the 'eye' closing.

              Yeah, the sky in the Primordial era was kinda... busy. It looked like an album cover.

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              • #37
                From the same topic:
                Ligier embodies Malfeas's restraint, while Ruvelia, the White Star, embodied his limitless authority and power. Ligier's green color is specifically a shout-out to its place in the ROYGBIV spectrum, and reflects that he is moderated, self-controlled, the voice of Theion. With the execution of Ruvelia, all the King of the Primordials was left with was the embodiment of his chains, which prevented him from collapsing in on himself and gaining a true redefinition.

                And completely unrelated:
                The Emmissary of Nexus is secretly an ancient Metody who aspired to oppose a potent god-king of the first age, only to stall when his hated rival was slain in the usurpation.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Crumplepunch View Post
                  I think that there's no moon or sun during Calibration. That's because the Daystar and Silver Chair park underneath Creation in a giant reverse-mountain workshop built by Autochthon for their annual maintenance. Or rather, their annual calibration.
                  This is one of mine too, with the same nomenclature reasoning.

                  My Autochtonia is a little more dieselpunk than even the setting book implies. Lots more direct Soviet-era propaganda influence.

                  The Emissary is the only Solar to survive the Usurpation into the modern era. He did so by sublimating his ego to the service of the Trade Pattern--essentially, he stayed semi-sane by becoming a selfless servant of something greater than himself. He's still ruthless and a little unbalanced, but he's not locked in permanent Limit Break, like a Solar his age probably should be. (Or all this was true before my players killed him in this current campaign.)
                  Last edited by blackwingedheaven; 02-05-2014, 04:11 PM.



                  "The true object of all human life is play. Earth is a task garden; heaven is a playground." -G.K. Chesterton

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                  • #39
                    Each Shintai charm a Primordial/Yozi has is representative of one of their jouten.

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                    • #40
                      The Empress is dead.

                      She's an old woman and died in her sleep in the Imperial Manse one day. She descended into the Underworld as a ghost and was met by a representative of the Neverborn who wanted her to take up the mantle of Deathlord from the Princess Magnificent. The Empress responded by laughing in their faces and passing on to Lethe mid laugh, moving utterly beyond the power of all of her enemies.

                      Linked to that, there is no Scarlet Bride. There never was nor did the Ebon Dragon plan for there to be. He simply started moving pieces around one day, setting up a fake escape plan to test people's reactions and distract from a more important plan. However, he found himself fascinated by the idea of the Scarlet Bride and of marrying her and started applying more and more elaborate touches to the whole thing, justifying it to himself by saying it was to better fool people. He has an entire wedding all set up, important and powerful artifacts forged, and his original plan in shambles because he was more focused on the wedding. He just doesn't have a Bride.

                      He realized this shortly after handing Ligier(and through him, Malfeas) the invitation to his wedding. The Dragon is now frantically looking for someone to fill the role of the Scarlet Bride and has just discovered that his first choice, the Empress, has come down with a sudden case of death.



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                      • #41
                        In my games the Neverborn are not "made of suck" or "failure incarnate".

                        They are still mad, in constant pain, self-loathing, and obviously suicidal, but they are also powers in and by themselves and they are not unable to scheme. Of course the whispers of the Neverborn consist of a lot of mad screaming and nonsensical mumbling, but there are also clear sign of sentience and intelligence to be heard, and it is not impossible to have something akin to a conversation with a Neverborn with orders, accusations, tempting offers, manipulation, and cosmic passive-agressive pettiness.

                        This makes sense to me. How else would the Deathlords have made a deal with the Neverborn? How would the Deathlords communicate with the Neverborn? How else would the Neverborn have made a deal with the Yozis?

                        Also, an Abyssal may achieve transcendance and become a Onceborn, beings similar to the Neverborn.


                        Loch Ness monsters. On vacation. On a pillow.

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                        • #42
                          Linowan and Dragon-Blooded Numbers - Basically same as Shinjo there. The Royal Clan for the Linowna in my games is actually Fire Aspected since that results in neat contrast of culture and element.

                          Aesthetics - Not just the Jadeborn but a few other things for my games have a specific look when I've described them:
                          • Autochthonia - Dieslel-punk as noted above. Lots of 1930s and 1940s look with cables, combustion engines, Tesla coils, loudspeakers with propoganda, trains and all that in cities. Just play the hell up out of the Soviet thing. At the same time draw on non-European bits here and there. I have Yugashites tending to be fairly dark skinned with blond hair, while Sovans having a like for things like dreadlocks and such. Just to mix up things a bit.
                          • Mountain Folk - Their technology tends to have a ceramic, crystal or geometric look to it. Lots of clean whites, flat surfaces and not much glitz. Underneath intricate clockworks and crystal laddice sthings. Think solid state i guess with a very 1890s German look. I tend to also toss in some Holy Roman Empire to things like hair styles, armor and weapon choices.
                          • Lookshy and the Shogunate - The machinery from the Shogunate tends to have this faux Japanese look with steampunk. Ships have pistons, cables, steam jets and such, with a lot of late Edo through 1910s look to clothing. I imagine a lot of Chaplains looking like Shinto or Japnaese Buddhist monks or Oumyouji.
                          • Gods - Over time I've started to develop very specific ideas of how the Maidens and Incarna look. Need to finish that drawing series as I think on it.
                          Gaia - Mostly canon, but I emphasize that she mostly was non-hostile to Autochthon, flighty and represents nature as this primal chaotic force. The Dragons are gods she helped create, and her twenty or so souls and their pantheons are inside Gnosis or hidden throughotu Creation, inside of which manifest Pangea, a kind of multi-layered Hollow Earth with shifting continents, oceans, and climates, with a blue-white star in the center providing light. A big deal with Gaia is mystery, not in the sense of how Cytherea was but in the sense of gnostic revelation and personal experience.

                          Autochthon - I kind of toss out the way souls below the Divine Ministers work as per in the Manual. Each has their normal set of seven souls, which administer things appropriate to it. They then collectively create smaller exhmachina for needed roles in Autochthonia, which are still made by committee to some extent and are what most machine gods are. Elementals are a result of Autochthon observing the evolution of elementals in Creation, thinking that might be a good automated system in his world and implemented them that way. They work like in Creation: they spring up when elemental Essence imbalances and go to maintian it. The Poles are swarming with them due to the nature of the Poles.

                          Viator - I just run with him as a Nineth Minister and having his own soul pantheon but it is locked in Nullspace. The names and titles of some fo his souls:
                          • Ayeed, Who Saw Past the Void
                          • Azhad, the Architect of Holocausts
                          • Daliya, the Cannibal's Muse
                          • Nedad, the Liar of Time
                          • Praeter, the Crucible of Predation
                          • Sasain, the Hammer Which Orchestrates Conflict
                          • Wayati, Necessity's Blade
                          Mostly just titles and osme ideas of what they look like, but fun stuff. Pretty much while one of the Ministers is in charge of warfare and conflict, while another is his fears, the Minister is a manifestation of how technology can be used for violence for violence's sake, pain, suffering, and hatred. It was forged with Autochthon's frustration of his treatment by his peers and is his more violent impulses given form. That and now in my head a dash of the Shrike from Hyperion, becuase adding a bit of The Lord of Pain to the mix don't hurt.

                          And stuff.


                          And stuff.
                          My DeviantArt Page // My tumblr // Exalted 3e Houserules

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Noodle View Post
                            Each Shintai charm a Primordial/Yozi has is representative of one of their jouten.
                            I'd like for as long as it take for someone to take it to its logical extreme and explain how it ruins the narrative of the Infernals or the Yozi.

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                            • #44
                              I think the biggest issue is that it was found by the devs over time that this model was a pain in the ass to extrapolate into things like Malfeas or Cecylene.

                              And stuff.


                              And stuff.
                              My DeviantArt Page // My tumblr // Exalted 3e Houserules

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                              • #45
                                At least one Autochthonian portal into Creation happened as depicted in the comic. However, instead of vomiting forth soldiers, it first emitted a beam of energy to clear the area, sweeping it in a complete 360 degree arc, to make sure there would be no immediate witnesses.

                                (Why? Think about it.)
                                Last edited by Winged Cat; 02-05-2014, 05:54 PM.

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