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  • #16
    Originally posted by Zelbinnean View Post
    Hmm, Jen, I was somewhat with you til the mentions of Lillun and GSP sigs (the femininity-shaming in a matriarchal culture like the Realm is particularly infuriating).

    Though I never really know when you're being serious versus ironic or hyperbolic. Your post seems to have aspects of all of these!
    I don't think the realm is matriarchal. The empress is at the top but the society in general doesn't have a power bias in favor of women.
    And there have been lots of cases IRL of states governed by women that didn't change anything about the social perception of femininity in general and males with feminine behavior/character in particular.

    Is it regretable? possibly
    Unrealistic? I would say the opposite.

    Originally posted by kawaiiwolf View Post
    Odd, I seem to have the opposite problem to you, finding solar to be the most shallow and uninspired characters in the setting. But a lot of the things you don't like or get I see as flavor that makes them good. However ... This is your world, run them however you want =)
    It depends on how you take the "flavor" of each splat.

    I'm not inventing anything new when I say solars are vanilla. It a strength or a weakness depending on what you want to make with them. They can be "anything", so some people have issues defining a role/peronality to them. Those kind of people need a base "structure" like the themes other splats work with.

    On the other hand some people find the archetypes are not flexible enough for what they want to do. Seems jen is one fo them.

    Now I can only advise him this : archetypes are onyl as flexible as you want them to be actually.
    Sids are not ALL spies, or even anything jame-bonds-like. Chosen of travel, serenity, endings offer so many possibilities : captains, musicians, ( those are even the sames of constellations, so you can be prety sure they are 100% sidereal compatible). I don't think there is anything else than having double life/arcane fate that you are required to take into account for your sid character.

    Lunars are not all crazy about animals. They inspire their powers, but ultimately they don't have to be defined by them more than a craftsman is defined by his tools (do you like the pun? )
    I feel the only thing important in their character design is shapeshifting and adaptability.

    DBs don't have to follow the general "culture". Yes their families is a (even THE) major part of their design, but there can always be people that are the opposite of the rest of their family. And as long as you exalt and don't go directly against the interest of the house, there is no reason for them to get rid of you (wether reject or try to kill). You'll just be the cousin that doesn't get involved/promoted to a high rank.

    The bottom line is, just start from the very basis of each splat and only include what works for you. A lot of things are added to the non-solar splat but are merely optional.

    The fool can only learn from a sage, but only the sage can learn from a fool.


    • #17
      Originally posted by Jen View Post

      It's not ? The way the book describe how the demon jump on the candidate make me think of a face-hugger scene.
      Then, that is in the first chapter of the Infernals, which is what it is and often gets literally torn out of the book for a reason.

      The first one, I want elegant and love as keywords for the moon, but Luna is the moon god of Exalted so I got hunting and animal instead (well, Lunar do have the Solar Bond for "love", but eeehh, I really don't like it for being so creepy).
      EX3 is getting rid of that form of Solar Bond, anyway. Of course, since everything is based off of mostly classic WoD character types, and Werewolf is still the inspiration for Lunars, that point is rather (puts on sunglasses) moot. I don't really have much to offer here, other than the unknown quantity of new Exalted maybe kind of related to the Lunars, which is also a potential downer for being unknown.


      • #18
        Originally posted by Jen View Post
        This is more of a "Sell me" thread, since I need to like non-Solar splat or else all they do in my Creation is getting punched in the face X'D
        I choose to read this as 'how can I have dramatic non-combat interactions with other Exalted as a Solar'?

        Short answer: Read the storytelling chapter for each Manual, and some of the adventures such as Disease of an Evil Concious which has some good DB and Abyssal non-combat options.

        Long answer: They're people! With all the same types of flaws and desires and shortcomings and ignorances and slights and pride that Solars have, and all the stories you can tell with them. They just don't have the past life memories and phenominal cosmic power of Solars. You can choose to ignore their powers when the daiklaves aren't out, and play a Dragon-Blooded Lookshyan much like any other high society, martially-capable NPC. Sure, they might have a better Resolve and Guile, sure they might have some mind-bending or anti-mind-bending Charms, but they might not! The Dragon-Blooded questioning everyone in the city square about the wherabouts of their missing relative might be just as supernatura tracking challenged as a mortal doing the same, they just have more Jade to wag tongues with, generally. And your Solar could help them out with that! A Sidereal might have a problem getting two nobles to marry, even though that's her job, because the Pattern Spiders don't like her calligraphy. You could help that courtship along after the Sid contacts you! Examples, et cetera.

        Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
        "sell me on X" threads... you've either got a person expounding at length on why they dislike something and asking for it to be reframed in terms that other people assume will appeal to them (which they almost always argue with anyway), or they known absolutely nothing about the subject and want other people to articulate some vaguely defined sets of things that they like in terms that they have to guess the questioner will find appealing... aaarrrgghhh it's too broad! There's nothing to work with here!
        Embrace your inner Twilight. Ignorance is always something to work with when you have the knowledge to impart that might make a difference. Often their dislikes are from misinformation! You can help them like that thing that you like! And everybody has a better funtime in Pretend Elf Game. Here I am, doing a very similar thing to your post.

        Regardless of the original 'sell me' post, I like the responses. There are some especially good 'sell me on Exalted' responses that are some of the *most broad* but also *most poetic* posts I've read on this forum.

        Sidereal Jumpstart (3e fanwork Charmset)
        Cascades (the above in flowchart form)


        • #19
          Now, to be fair...I take great liberties with the canon interpretation of many of the splats, largely because they, by and large, utterly fail to pass even a Level 1 Intelligence Test.

          For clarity, Lvl 1 Intelligence is a writers concept around making a character that acts like a real person. It is taking a character that is about to do something, stepping into their shoes, and asking yourself "in this situation, with who they are and what they know, would I do what I'm about to have this character do?" This is actually a hard thing to do with characters...because it means they won't do something just for the sake of the plot. It has to make sense that a reasonable person would make that decision. So, I tend to reinterpret splats and other groups in such a way that it doesn't look like they play catch with the Idiot Ball all day, after eating their morning bowl of Fail-Flakes. This even impacts the way I treat the Great Curse...I have to make it more subtle and insidious because a Level 1 Intelligent character would have noticed that all his Exalted buddies periodically go nuts (particularly with you'd think someone would think something was up when Jim the CoS suddenly decides that everyone in Creation should know the launch codes to the Realm's Thousand Forged Dragons and no one can convince him otherwise...for about a half hour, then he calms down on his own. And this is the third time this year that happened.). I do like it much better in 3E, that it isn't always the same static reaction (which was a houserule I ran with anyway). So, all that said...

          Lunars: At their core, a Solar is an idealist...because TUS is an idealist. They aspire to greatness and glory and have the power to make it so. Lunars are less capable of reshaping the world in their image...but they are great at reshaping themselves. I tend to view Lunars as pragmatists...immensely practical folk who look at the world and go "it isn't ideal, but I can work with this." As opposed to a Solar who goes "It isn't I'm going to fix that." This mindset is why the Lunars didn't stick around and fight to the death during the Usurpation. It's why they like guerrilla warfare. It's why they tend to target barbarian tribes as groups to control. They were pragmatic and recognized a losing battle when they saw they fled to fight another day. They know The Realm is too powerful to oppose directly. They know that Barbarians are much easier to work with than 'civilized folk' whom they have to break of their Immaculate beliefs first; the barbarians are probably already annoyed with The Realm, already have a predisposition towards violence, and might even worship the spirit of an animal the Lunar can turn into.

          Thanks to their patron, they are also a little bit feral...but the way this manifests differs from Lunar to Lunar. Yes, you have the stereotypical bear-totem who is a raging berserker. But you also have the socialite with all the prim, graceful dignity of the cat that is her totem...or the sorcerer/scholar with the patience and talent for stillness of his owl-totem...or the cunning warrior with the fierce loyalty of his dog-totem...or the hawk-totem archer who will wait with unmatched patience for that perfect moment when he has a perfect shot at his prey. It isn't all barbarian berserkers with them...'animalistic traits' can take many forms beyond 'RAWR I MAUL YOU!' If you identify someone to be 'like a cat,' it is a very different thing than to identify them as being 'like a wolverine.'

          Sidereals: This is the splat that is often portrayed as the least competent in all of Creation. I disagree, in general. Apart from times when the whole lot of them get together and all the Solars end up dead...I tend to portray Siddies as being pretty good at their jobs. That said...I also tend to treat them as some of the strangest of the Exalted. Due to their Arcane Fate, Sidereals have very little meaningful contact with mortals. You may have a Sidereal who builds up a very durable Resplendent Destiny and uses it to have friends and companions she can visit...but with how busy she is, she seldom has time to go visit them. The only people a Sidereal can build up real, meaningful relationships with are other Exalted (usually only other Sidereals) and the Celestial gods that are immune to Arcane Fate. As a result, I tend to treat them as being more detached from humanity than other splats...more likely to overlook the little people that their plans may harm. More likely to come off as a bit weird when not wearing an RD.

          It is a bit challenging for players to be in control of Sidereals, because they have access to resources that can greatly simplify life for the rest of the Circle. Efficient Secretary Technique alone obsoletes pretty much any reason for the players to investigate anything. Of course, the other challenge with having a Siddie in the party is that, unless they are a Ronin...if they are young enough to be a PC, they probably can't swing Detached Duty or any significant amount of furlough...and so are likely to get called up to go do their job, rather than hanging with the party. And it's entirely possible that if the Siddie has to wander off for a bit while the party is still in the low power bracket, that part of the Circle is going to fail their willpower checks and forget who he is before he gets back. Of course, this all assumes that the Circle actually knows that the Circle member is actually a Sidereal, as opposed to thinking that he's a particularly skilled and wise enlightened mortal martial artist or something.

          A big difference between them and the other splats is that, given their more limited range of power as well as their gifts of foresight, Sidereals are the most likely splat to go into something with a detailed plan. Solars can just steamroll complications...Lunars adapt on the fly. Sidereals aren't as powerful as Solars or as flexible as Lunars...but they have access to far more information than either of the other two splats. When a Sidereal goes into something...they probably have multiple primary plans, all with contingencies for things that may happen, and at least two 'in case of FUBAR' plans. This is much easier to do as a ST than as a player, because you can just use ST fiat to make crap up on the fly, and make it seem like the Sidereal had planned for it to happen. For example, arranging for there to be something nice and soft underneath a window so that they can toss someone important out that window when other methods of escape are cut off...and time everything so that there just happens to be a cart rolling by at the moment they need to steal it to make good their escape.

          As NPCs, Sidereals are seldom 'obviously a Sidereal.' Even when they are operating with someone they think they can reason's much easier to slip into a disguise as an old man complaining about 'those terrible monsters that wander down here from that old tomb,' than to explain who and what you are to the Circle, and then to convince them that the old Solar Tomb you are trying to guide them to (so that the Dawn can get his hands on that Daiklave that will save his life in two months) is not a trap. Given how easily Siddies can disguise's entirely possible that the Circle could get numerous 'quests' from different NPCs that are actually all the same Sidereal, just wearing a different RD and disguise.

          And, for the examples they give...honestly...Bond is a terrible example. Objectively, he's a terrible secret agent/spy who gets the job done, but leaves behind a massive trail of collateral damage and evidence tying him (and Britain) to the operation. He's actually more like a Night-caste who just kind of bullcraps his way through the mission, relying on his superior skills to carry the day. Yes, you can portray a Siddie as a sort of secret agent...but they won't be like Bond. Ethan Hunt (Mission Impossible) has moments where he looks like an actual secret agent...but still ends up dropping the ball and going all Action Hero towards the end of the movie. If a Secret Agent did their job one should have any idea they were there until long after they left...and it should leave their victims scratching their heads wondering what the heck just happened.

          Dragonblooded: As can be pretty plainly noted...very few people IRL actually think they are the villain of their story. The Dragonblooded are no different. They are a tightly bound civilization with a strong emphasis on family that genuinely believes they are doing the best they can for the world. As opposed to the Sidereals, a Dragonblooded (especially a Dynast) is certainly not lonely. They are surrounded by family, servants, and peers at all times, and their name (again, especially if they are from one of the dynastic houses) carries a lot of weight. The Terrestrials were created to be soldiers...and that has not left their culture with time; they are the most disciplined of all of the Exalted. They are forced to grow up quickly and often expected to show an adult-level of self control by the time they are 10 years old. You are right that being (or even portraying yourself as) effeminate or weak is seriously frowned upon by the Terrestrials...they were specifically designed to be soldiers, and their culture reinforces this. Which means that if you create a character who does fit that description, they are either going to have to hide it behind a facade...or they are going to have a very rough life...either of which is ripe with good storytelling opportunities (and could be a grand excuse for why they defected from The Realm to go join a party of Anathema or something, if you are playing a mixed group).

          A very important point with them is that they are the only splat that can freely go nuts with their powers anytime and anywhere they want without having to worry about a Ninja-Doom-Squad being sent after them. Furthermore, in much of Creation, they are viewed as a legitimate authority figure...if you have a Mnemon in your party, just their presence serves to open doors that would otherwise be shut. An innkeeper may refuse to house what he views as heavily armed vagrants. But, he will quickly throw people out of the building to make room for a Dynast...and probably let you stay for free if you even suggest it, kowtowing the whole time...and being secretly delighted that now he can rent the room you stayed in out for more money since it was graced by a Chosen of the Dragons. To play a Dragonblooded is to enjoy being among the ruling class of Creation, as opposed to living on its fringes.

          Oh, and to address the 'matriarchal' viewpoint...women have equal rights and roles in society as just seems like what we consider 'female' behavior is suppressed because it isn't proper behavior for a soldier. It's less that they think 'being a woman' is inferior, it's that they think 'acting soft' is inferior. Their women are still women...and are treated as equals to men...they just don't necessarily act 'feminine' as we would define it. In fact, The Realm may actually define 'Feminine' as "graceful and beautiful and refined while still being able to kick my butt six ways to Saturnday." And in this way, for a guy to be 'feminine' it wouldn't necessarily be frowned upon by their culture. It's weakness that they despise.

          Abyssals: I...have trouble with Abyssals. Their names are often pretentious and a bit comical...but you can produce good ones if you think about it for a bit, also bearing in mind that most of them don't actually go by their full name all the time...and few people would even know that full name. For example, an Abyssal with a name like "The Bride Spattered with the Blood of the Damned" has an unquestionably pretentious name. But, most of the time she would simply be called 'The Bride' or simply 'Bride.' I was glad to hear that in 3E, they were moving away from the sole point of the Abyssal to be 'kill all the things everywhere.' To put it bluntly, if you are playing a campaign as one of the 'good guys' with an Abyssal in it, they either make for a good bit of fodder if your Circle has something of an emo bent to it (or that can be really annoying), or they can make for a pretty awesome anti-hero.

          Some of the mechanics around Abyssals do make them difficult to play, but even a loyalist Abyssal can be made interesting if you make them more involved than 'Perpetual Murder Machine.'

          Infernals: I severely dislike the canon way that Infernals backgrounds are portrayed, what with Lillun and I tend to ignore those chapters, and rest happy in the fact that the devs have promised to fix it in 3E. Instead, Infernals are very much like Solars, if they had a boss that was crazy and a hellish bent to their powers. I've honestly always found the thought funny of a Green Sun Prince having a rather long-suffering attitude towards his 'masters.' The thought of a savvy Infernal breaking into an irritated sounding monologue because Malfeas insists that you monologue at your victims...then being utterly unsurprised when said victims escape. I do tend to ignore the fact that 2E made Infernals into proto-Primordials...because if that is a thing that can happen, it's a pretty important plot point.

          You didn't mention them, but.... Alchemicals: Seriously, super-robots from Soviet Autochthonia...what's not to love? These guys are so full of storytelling opportunities (especially if they return to Creation) that it is insane. "Holy crap! What's that big ball of fire up there!? Wait, it burns your skin? And you haven't put it out yet!? goal, put out the big ball of fire before it kills everyone." "It's so the heck do you sleep like this?" "What? Exalted? In charge? You're crazy." "Ugh...Creation is" "Hold on guys, I need to go get all my skin flayed off, replace half my limbs, and undergo intensive brain surgery...see ya in a few days."
          Last edited by guildsbounty; 12-02-2015, 03:45 PM.


          • #20
            I have never seen the Dragon blooded as some stoic macho Rambo thing; but as passionated and having an ideal closer to the manly ideal of the 18th century, where "a real man" showed his feelings. Just it is for both genders in the Realm. Then, due to the arranged marriages, and the want to avoid "accidents", homosexual couplings are encouraged. I see the Realm to look down on cowardly behavior, but that doesn't mean they all just storm blindly into the fray. Being smart and succeed without having to fight should be highly valued. I think "The Scarlet Pimpernel" would work perfectly as a DB, if adding some elemental fueled powers to him. The "effeminate" sidebar comment of second ed... My interpretation of that one has always been that the Realm looks down on people being "weak", and a writer wrote it in a stupid way.

            The realm is also the main setting for court intrigues. Smile at your enemy, be vary of your friends. Almost everyone is both a piece and a player at the game of politics, no matter how far away one is.

            When it comes to Lunars, having them as "Barbarian shape-shifters" only is really to miss 99% of their potentials. If having them being selected by enduring something (regardless if it was their own choice to end up there or not) or by refusing to conform, then they probably should have the most varied set of mentalities. While the DBs comes from anywhere, most people conforms to the group they grew up with.


            • #21
              Abyssals can present some pretty good comedic opportunities, either IC if they understand how ridiculous their page-long name is and have faculty with black humor or OOC if you play them as straight and goth as possible. Just because the Neverborn hate laughter doesn't mean you have to!

              But sexually.


              • #22
                On the subject of unwoven coadjutors and the chrysalis grotesque (things I hope carry over into 3E, by the way), the image used in that relevant section of the Infernals book is what really sold me on the chrysalis and coadjutors. It's like being a butterfly or a cicada emerging from a cocoon or the husk of one's previous self.

                In reference to the Gem Fusion comment earlier, it really is like becoming a new being who is more than sum total of the mortal and the demon that merged in the process.

                Thread Reaper <(´ ՞)ਊ( ՞ )>


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                  You can't take the Abyssal naming scheme seriously? Then I guess you just don't like them and won't be using them, eh? Why does a big song and dance need to be made about asking other people to change that for you?
                  Hyperbolic gibberish is a key component of many Jen threads.

                  If it's just a question of "I don't find much appeal in other Exalted, how can I use them", then the answer is that you don't need to; being able to play the whole game from just the corebook means you can happily get by playing Solars and only ever really getting into action setpieces with gods, demons, mobs of ninjas, marauding Fair Folk and the occasional set of Dragon Blooded quick characters, with maybe the occasional other Exalted also put up as a quick character.
                  My rule is to minimize the presence of the Exalted in general. Abyssals are cool and all, but I don't see the need for them as NPCs.


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by kawaiiwolf View Post
                    Odd, I seem to have the opposite problem to you, finding solar to be the most shallow and uninspired characters in the setting. But a lot of the things you don't like or get I see as flavor that makes them good. However ... This is your world, run them however you want =)

                    There is NOTHING that says a lunar "HAS" to be a cultural barbarian. They can be in every way urbane and cultured as any tea house patron, including in the arts. They especially work well to flaunt the status quo. If the realm is "supposed to be" no frills (a quality you can easily adjust) then their act to reject that can be in every way as compelling as a frilly solar you had in mind. With lunars the key really is adaptability. They should be able to adapt in some way to work with any challenge, even if they don't excel at any one particular thing. Instead of going the animal route too, keep body morphisim in their toolkit. Bendy tricks a body shouldn't normally be able to pull off or the ability to show off a burly chest as hard as steel yet supple as silk. They change to meet the challenge instead of overpowering the situation with their specialties.
                    I had the same problem as you until Exalted 3rd. I just found them boring in previous editions because it didn't feel like they had any sort of theme other then raw power and maybe light. Now it actually feels like their theme is perfection/skill/whatever you want to call it, which I find much more interesting.

                    With the Lunars I think that is actively the canon now from what I remember. Not the cultural barbarian thing, but the explicitly not having to be one. I think one of the dev at one point outright stated that you can be a born into high society Lunar in a major city as easily as you can be the born as a barbarian Lunar in the wilderness and both can make the same amount of sense.


                    • #25
                      So, I'm going to try to narrow this down because essays on what you want/don't want are going to be less than productive. Instead, I'll address the "this is why I don't like them" aspects.


                      You've mentioned you don't like them working for Elders. Or the Silver Pact. Good news! The opening explicitly notes all Lunars do not work with the Silver Pact. They might take favors or something from them, but playing a Lunar who has jack-crap all to do with the Greater Lunar Oppressive Cultural Establishment is totally a thing. Just think about it as playing Drizz't except with fur, strange fanart searches in Google, and silver tattoos instead of black elves, bondage, and lots of webbing.


                      The Realm is an oppressive evil empire yea unto the Umpteenth Generation of Her Redness' Poorly Restitched Leg Baring Backup Gown. If you don't like it? Ignore it. Lost Eggs are DBs that are born in the middle of Podunk Anywhere. They can be anything. They're actually less limited than the Sid idea you've mentioned a few times because they could be so far out there they've never heard of the Scarlet Vacuum Economy.


                      Given the number of comments and art I've seen of TED as a Black and Red Themed Bishie, I think these guys are pretty easy to do for what you're looking for. Especially in 3E where the Deathlords Exalt their chosen but they don't actively try to control them.


                      We've had this discussion, so I thiiiiiiink you're about as good with the Magenta Buff Bot as you're gonna get.


                      Hard to say, but the thing is, 3E is tossing out so goddamn much of their 2E lore. Threads before now have shown you drawing the Yozis up as Malfeas' Bishounen Chorus Line (while Isidoros, a Black Hole Boar, is about as far from bishie as I can think of). This shows the willingness to change what you don't like and make something you do up from whole cloth. Just apply it to Infernals. Their big things are they're ex-Solar shards, and they work for the Yozis. Everything else is mutable and changeable to whatever you want, from Horrible Demon Kings to the Demonic Offices of the Malfean Tax Auditors.

                      Alchemicals: Well.... if you want robots, you could do stuff with it? I dunno. It's not on the list.

                      But really, when it comes down to it, having any Exalt just say "fuck it, I don't wanna work for you anymore!" is totally legit. The entire setting is built around the Incarnae getting the Exalted together to give the bloodiest, mass-murdering-est 2-weeks notice in the history of Creation. By their definition, an Exalt deciding what they want to do and doing it is totally what they're made to do. So if you don't like working for the Elders? Don't. Don't like the Realm? Kick them to the curb. Prefer not working for Heaven? Your Divine Office Space has been vacant for centuries. Essentially, canon is meant to give guidelines and suggestions for what you can do, but it is not an electrically charged torture closet defining the only things you can do. Don't like it? Change it. There ya go.
                      Last edited by OpMegs; 12-02-2015, 07:29 PM.


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by OpMegs View Post
                        Don't like the Realm? Kick them to the curb.
                        Y'know, playing a Terrestrial group ruling a Realm Satrapy whose reaction to the Realm Succession Crisis is "... Fuck this, we'll form our OWN kingdom. With blackjack, and hookers." would be an awesome premise. >>

                        Disclaimer: In favor of fun and enjoyment, but may speak up to warn you that you're gonna step on a metaphorical land mine


                        • #27
                          My advice would be to stop characterizing every Exalt type so narrowly.

                          Dragonbloods are certainly influenced by the Empire, even if they're not from it, but even within the Realm they can have all the differences that you see in Roman and Chinese nobles with the addition of being elementally-infused demigods.

                          Lunars do have the animal thing going on, so if you hate animals I suppose it'd be hard to reconcile that. As for barbarism, you don't need to play Conan of Cimmeria if you don't want to. A lunar can be from any walk of life.

                          Sidereals have a couple elder characters you don't seem to like... well... that's fine. There's a good chance you'd never have to deal with them. Same goes with most every elder of any brand of Exaltation. As for their powers, yeah they're pretty weird and restrictive so if you don't enjoy that type of gameplay it'd be best to avoid it.

                          Abyssals don't need ridiculously long names, they just don't have names like Carol or Patrick; it should be an "Exalted name", but death-themed. As for the rest of it, you seem to be taking the "silly forum view" as a literal thing. They have to dress in a manner that evokes death. Far as I can tell, that's it.

                          Infernals seem to be another case of "silly forum view" taken literally. They don't have a mascot, and they aren't middle schoolers. They're people who have been infused with the powers of the mad creators of everything. If all a character can do after that is act like a shonen stereotype then that's their own problem. Also I like that their charmsets are weird and twisted in a way that reminds me of Sidereals but is more functional.


                          • #28
                            See, I'm kind of the opposite. I need to force myself to treat Solars fairly, because I have a massive dislike for the splat and a lot of what it has historically been, to the point that for most of my Exalted playing career, if you'd given me the choice between playing a Solar and not playing Exalted at all I wouldn't have hesitated for an instant in choosing the second one. I need to consciously remind myself to not make every single Solar a self-aggrandizing asshole with no redeeming qualities.

                            But if you want to know what calls me to Sidereals... well, it's hard to explain (especially after midnight on a weekday :P). But a lot of it comes down to the fact that they are not single agents that do whatever the fuck they want like Solars are. Sidereals are, by design, a part of something. They have a very important duty, and their reaction to this duty and the conflicts that inevitably arise on how to fulfill it drive the stories of a member of the splat more often than not. Sidereal Charms are rarely all that great, but you can do miracles by knowing the right people and having the right access keys. The greatest power a Sidereal PC has is rarely their Charms, but rather their Backgrounds. You have people you share your objectives with. You have colleagues. Friends who are equals, and enemies who are as well, and you all know each other. And, importantly, you have a job to do. It's not about you. It's about what you and your companions believe should happen, and how to make it come to pass.

                            Another thing is the "assumed" focus: Solars are encouraged to make large, sweeping changes, while Sidereals are encouraged to be much more detail-oriented. A perfect example successful "textbook" solar to aspire to is Buddha, or Gengis Khan, massive figures that people love or hate or fear. A perfect example of a successful "textbook" Sidereal to aspire to is Lu-Tze, from Discworld, who changed the course of history by encouraging the right man at the right time and breaking the right lever at the wrong time. Hell, you often say you enjoy the stereotypically "softer" characters that instead of jumping into action, prefer to stand a bit back and solve things more subtly, with a smile and a wink and a love letter in the right place, and Sidereals are probably the friendliest splat to that kind of thing in the game.

                            Anyway, back to things... As NPCs, there's a lot of ways to go. You can easily play up the wizened sage. But you can also play up a lot of other angles! Beleaguered manager. Detached man in black. Subtle problem-fixer. Friendly advice-giver. Sidereals get cut off from their previous life extremely sharply - Arcane Fate means that the people they loved don't even remember them after they Exalt. There's a lot of drama and character to be milked from how a character reacts to something like THAT. Sidereals have trouble forming attachments outside their Fellowship due to that same Arcane Fate - a Sidereal in love is the most tragic of things, because his lover can simply forget his face one day, and shit like that leaves a mark on people. Some deal with it by being detached, others deal with it by way of bluntness, or maybe through plain frustration. Sidereals have a lot of information and esoteric facts at their fingertips - perhaps they can be haughty about it, or maybe they drop into "teacher" mode at the drop of a hat, or are prone to quirky logic and mental leaps and nonsequitors, or forget that not everyone has the same kind of pivileged access they do, or they're very secretive, or maybe they just don't talk about it because "it's obscure stuff, you wouldn't understand". Sidereals are on a first name basis with a lot of spirits - where most people will be terribly reverential to a god, there's a nontrivial chance that a Sid has played Gateway and had a beer with the god in question in Yu-Shan and is going to greet them with a "hey, man, you still up for poker on Venusday" (or "you cheating bastard you owe me ten Ambrosia", of course).

                            Basically, if you want a quick shorthand for splat NPCs? Simply think of it like this: where Solars are people only more so, Sidereals are people in strange circumstances. They have the same foibles and problems as other people, they can be patient or ragey, happy or melancholic, softspoken or roid-raging, but they might end up being expressed in different ways due to their rather particular situations.

                            Did any of that random ramble make sense, I wonder.
                            Last edited by Drascin; 12-02-2015, 07:51 PM.


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Jen View Post
                              Yeaaah, I probably should stop typing like I'm on a shipping blog :'P
                              Wait, this isn't a shipping blog?


                              (Slowly puts away the Coik/SLS fic he's been writing...)


                              I can totally get being turned off by the portrayal of homosexuality in the Realm. For me there's still enough compelling about them to make Dragon-Blooded characters super-interesting. They're the underdogs among the Exalted. They have to be careful and devious to win. They have to sacrifice. They have to work together, something that their culture makes it hard to do. I kept their canon treatment of sexuality in my games because it's something that my players can "ugh" over. (I know my players fairly well.) There's a lot to be said for social games in the Realm too, but I'll let someone else say it.

                              Lunars... If you don't like "Hulk Smash," and you don't like shapeshifting spies infiltrating the Realm, and you don't like barbarian warlords, and you don't like crazy wilderness hermit sorcerers, and you don't like Gamera, and you don't like flying archers, and you don't like the seducer with a thousand faces, and you don't like insane spider chimera who claim a hundred miles of territory with their essence webs, and you don't like calling Sidereals "The Scum Of Heaven"... Well, then you probably don't like Lunars.

                              Sidereals (at least the young ones) are compelling to me because they're fantastically overworked fate ninjas working in a jaw-droppingly beautiful Heaven they have no time to enjoy. (The elders, as far as I'm concerned, exist only so I can kill named NPCs off-screen)

                              Abyssals (thanks, phone, for auto-correcting that to "abusers") are people who literally sold their names and souls for power. MOTIVATION. And the Liminals, someone ELSE messed with their souls and now they pay the price. Love it.

                              Gotta stop here because it's time to get off the bus, but yeah, I love this game, because essentially all the character types appeal to me.
                              Last edited by Colin_Fredericks; 12-03-2015, 12:38 PM. Reason: Remembered the word "Liminal"

                              Current project: Monster Ambulance, wherein you save monsters. In your ambulance.


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Kunoichi View Post
                                (...) Also I like that [the infernal] charmsets are weird and twisted in a way that reminds me of Sidereals but is more functional.
                                Whenever I read something similar I cry

                                Everytime. :/

                                The fool can only learn from a sage, but only the sage can learn from a fool.