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A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-through of Ex3

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  • Originally posted by Totentanz View Post

    A fair few of the charm trees seem to be pushing towards specific character archetypes, rather than simply offering generic powers. I also got the Sherlock vibe (specifically the silly-level genius of the current BBC show) from the tree. I won't mention others, but I'm curious as to what you see.
    Will think about it. The Integrity tree kind of has the "immovable as stone mystic" feel about it. I could see Yoda using it, if he took some reality steroids.

    Originally posted by Kyman201 View Post
    That's why an Investigation Charm of "Draw Conclusions" might be helpful, because some players just space on connecting the dots.
    The thing is, RAW kind of suggests you do this anyway.

    Originally posted by Ex3 Rules, p.225
    A successful roll uncovers a piece of information at the site that will somehow advance the investigation, allowing him to proceed to a new scene. The Storyteller should narrate the character’s deductions, rather than just giving him the clue itself. Instead of telling a player “You find a smear of yellow mud,” tell him “You find a smear of yellow mud—whoever did this must have come from the docks!”
    This joins the dots for the players, they just need to know enough to make a roll. Which I guess is what WIE is for, as case study rules without charms does rely on characters being aware and looking. So I can see the advantage of "plot senses", if players are being dense. I I think my beef is probably more with the case scene action. For me, the example is too much like handholding, which isn't far off railroading. I would expect my players to then find out where the yellow mud came from, if they didn't know already (which I hope they would, having set it up and described it at some earlier point in the session).

    Eh, I don't know. I just expect my players to WORK for their plots, dangit! And anything that reduces that work to just dice rolling I will tend to dislike. I will cease ranting now.


    A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
    Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

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    • I agree except when I don't. My group is mostly casual gamers right now and they just can't muster the rp creativity much of the time and require dice rolls that tell them they can play a witty and insightful character even if they kind of lack such things. I long for the days of better roll players but i want everyone to have fun.

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      • Automatically giving the players at least one useful clue whether or not they succeed at their investigation roll is the big thing in game design right now, as championed by Gumshoe and even adopted in the new edition of Call of Cthulhu (where succeeding means you found useful info, and failing means you found at least some useful info but something bad happens as a result if the way you found it). People got tired of investigation games that grind to a halt because somebody fails a roll.

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        • Originally posted by Xerxes View Post
          Eh, I don't know. I just expect my players to WORK for their plots, dangit! And anything that reduces that work to just dice rolling I will tend to dislike. I will cease ranting now.
          Huh. Putting it right there in the mechanics is... Kind of not great design. Let them work a BIT and draw the lines, and only suggest it if they have trouble.

          I know the start of the systems chapter explicitly mentions "If the rules don't work, change it" but... I don't know, that's another little point that's just... Niggling at me. Almost patronizing, but I don't want to throw out that word.


          Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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          • If you make it a chore to find your plot players will shrug and find something else to do. And then you end up having to write on the fly.

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            • Originally posted by Elfive View Post
              If you make it a chore to find your plot players will shrug and find something else to do. And then you end up having to write on the fly.
              Counterpoint: If your players want to solve a mystery they'll probably resent just being handed the answers.

              Edit: Like, okay... The example in the core. Rather than jump straight to "There's yellow mud... Must be from the docks!", I'd do something like this.

              Revealed Clue: The footprints are made from yellow mud.

              If threshold successes: In town, mud of this color usually forms at the waterfront.

              If they don't get enough thresholds for additional clues, I can say they may roll an Int + Lore to try and know where you'd find yellow mud in the city.

              And if you have "Yellow Mud on the boots" and "Yellow Mud usually found at the waterfront" hanging, I like to think that most players can go "AH-HA! The guy must have been near the water at some point! To the pier!"
              Last edited by Kyman201; 05-25-2016, 04:13 PM.


              Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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              • Originally posted by Stephen Lea Sheppard View Post
                Automatically giving the players at least one useful clue whether or not they succeed at their investigation roll is the big thing in game design right now, as championed by Gumshoe and even adopted in the new edition of Call of Cthulhu (where succeeding means you found useful info, and failing means you found at least some useful info but something bad happens as a result if the way you found it). People got tired of investigation games that grind to a halt because somebody fails a roll.
                And the Gumshoe system provided much of the inspiration for how I updated the core investigation systems.


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                • Originally posted by Jairain View Post
                  I agree except when I don't. My group is mostly casual gamers right now and they just can't muster the rp creativity much of the time and require dice rolls that tell them they can play a witty and insightful character even if they kind of lack such things. I long for the days of better roll players but i want everyone to have fun.
                  This is probably the core of it, and it comes down to knowing your players. If you know that your players don't want to sweat a lot of the mental legwork of solving a mystery, then a lighter use where you can lay out some bigger inductions/deductions is more useful. If the players want to do the cerebral heavy lifting, then you can just lay out the clues and maybe occasionally make suggestions if they're stuck.


                  Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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                  • Personally, I'd rather it were more like stating facts with Lore, where the more successes you get the more clues the player can invent, sort of thing.


                    ....

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                    • Originally posted by BrilliantRain View Post
                      Personally, I'd rather it were more like stating facts with Lore, where the more successes you get the more clues the player can invent, sort of thing.
                      Now that could be seriously interesting. Although without knowing the answer first I'd worry that they'd describe totally inappropriate clues.


                      A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
                      Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

                      Comment


                      • Yeah, it's an interesting idea, but when I do investigations I want to work out what's going on, not decide what's going on.


                        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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                        • Larceny

                          Seasoned Criminal Method
                          • Solar becomes an "iconic" criminal.
                          • Grants a range of crime-related personas, from familiarity with the underworld, to evading the law and seeming like a perfect mark.
                          • The lack of system here bugs me. It's basically a charm to the ST to say "cut them some slack while doing criminal stuff" or "make sure they can move their criminal-minded plot forward". It feels nice, but it's not a real charm.
                          Spurious Presence
                          • Wherever you are, you can project that you belong there.
                          • So long as the Solar is dressed and behaves appropriately, she will not appear suspicious. Gives a bonus to character's Guile when trying to belong. May "reconstitute" Guile to be based off Larceny rather than Socialise, which also applies to read intentions actions, and any charms which make Read Intentions harder can be used with this charm.
                          • Does the "reconstitute" terminology mean that it can always key off Larceny, or just when using this charm? I'd guess the latter, but the language could imply either.
                          Preying on Uncertainty Approach
                          • Exploit a gap in your accuser's knowledge when you're found somewhere you shouldn't be.
                          • Automatically instill a temporary minor intimacy in your favour when confronted about your unexpected presence in a location.
                          • The system feels implied here, and not explicit. It doesn't kick in until the last sentence, and even then I'm kind of assuming what happens with the above description.
                          Clever Bandit’s Rook
                          • Easily hook marks with a mask of sincerity.
                          • Supplements an instill action to make a person believe something belongs to the Solar. Cannot directly contradict their existing knowledge. May not spend willpower to resist this unless there is contrary evidence.
                          • How does it supplement it? What bonuses does it give? Again, the total lack of crunch leaves me wondering what this charm actually does.
                          Swift Gambler’s Eye
                          • The Solar is jaded and bitter, which allows her to see through others' gambits.
                          • During a game of chance or strategy, lower the target's Guile by 2 and make a Read Intentions roll. Success allows the Solar to tell how the target feels about their current chances.
                          • Could this double up in diplomatic situations?
                          Lightning-Hand Sleight
                          • The Solar is patient and cheats at lightspeed.
                          • Cheat enough to skew the results for a round. This will not be noticed until Essence-based hours afterwards. The more this is done in a single game, this reduces by an hour. Can also be used to seamlessly introduce poison into a substance.
                          • See, I was about to write this particularly branch of the tree as only useful to gamblers. Then the game puts something actually useful into it. Now I have to wade through a charm of rubbish to get to a useful baseline ability.
                          Flawless Pickpocketing Technique
                          • The Solar's hands move quicker than the eye and can snitch things.
                          • Get auto-success at at a pickpocketing action, unless opposed by magic. May not steal items that are in use or attuned artefacts. Cannot be detected by Awareness. Those with supernatural-level senses can attempt to notice it, with a penalty. Immune to Larceny-noticing magic, unless the target also knows Flawless Pickpocketing Technique.
                          • Eh. Pickpocketing never really excites me.
                          Lock-Opening Touch
                          • Can open a lock with a touch.
                          • Pay 5 motes to do it. Can challenge a magical lock with 1 mote and tools, gaining double 9s and Essence auto-successes. This still gives auto-successes, but failure gives an unwanted occurrence.
                          Flawlessly Impenetrable Disguise
                          • Solars are masters of disguise to a supernatural level, and can listen in to a ton of cool stuff.
                          • May disguise herself to a high degree, changing gender, age, height, ethnicity etc. 2 auto-successes to the attempt, ignore penalties for adapting a different race or gender, and gain double 9s.
                          Phantom Hood Technique
                          • No real flavour text. Can mask anima.
                          • Once per scene, can spend five peripheral motes as if they were personal, so long as the Essence expenditure is helping with her Larceny actions. Resets by a two-point social stunt in which subterfuge is enhanced by another social ability to help being a criminal.
                          Living Shadow Preparedness
                          • The Solar does something with light and shadow.
                          • Roll Wits+Larceny, double any successes and keep them for a rainy day. Banked successes can be applied to a single Larceny or Stealth action, until the Exalt sleeps.
                          • "can be renewed"? I -think- this means that the charm can only be used twice a day period, but the wording is vague.
                          Unshakable Rogue’s Spirit
                          • The Solar's talent is a usurer, who offers loans.
                          • Add automatic successes to any larceny-type action, in exchange for a -1 penalty to the next Join Battle roll per such success granted. Can add up to half her Join Battle pool. Debt clears after a night's rest. Cannot be used in combat.
                          • This is really quite an interesting charm. That's the best word I can use for it at this stage.
                          Master Plan Meditation
                          • Meticulous planning aids against failure.
                          • After performing one of many actions, roll Int+Larceny, and convert successes to contingency points. These can be spent doing something that covers your tracks, or takes larcenous planning, such as a detailed heist scheme. Can (possibly) be used to gather points multiple times, but once they start spending they must empty the pool before refilling.
                          • This is an awesome charm. It rather feels like another thing to track, but having it as a trackable metric alongside up-to-no-good projects would be kind of cool.
                          On Master Plan Meditation Sidebar
                          • These are good clarifications. Really helpful in visualising how the charm works, too.
                          Proof-Eating Palm
                          • The Solar's hands can outwit lots of things.
                          • Hide any object small enough to palm. Can hide up to 5 objects, which vanish until the Solar wants them to reappear.
                          • What is Elsewhere? First time I've seen it mentioned.
                          Stealing From Plain Sight Spirit
                          • The Solar's stole things from under the gods' enemies noses before, they can do it again.
                          • Pickpocket an object from plain sight. The theft goes unnoticed for minutes based on the Solar's Essence, unless something draws attention to it being missing first.
                          Magpie’s Invisible Talon
                          • The Solar manipulates Essence flows to steal something she can't reach.
                          • Double 9s on a pickpocketing roll, and steal things Essence yards away, including through glass.
                          Perfect Mirror
                          • The Solar only shows what she wishes to be seen.
                          • May disguise herself as a specific person or with significant bodily alterations without penalty. Adds non-charm successes to the disguise roll. Only very inaccurate behaviour can let others see through the disguise. Magic-based attempts to see through it suffer a -4 penalty, and subsequent attempts after a failure get harder. Can do Essence-based effects that can't be achieved through basic disguise.
                          Fate-Shifting Solar Arete
                          • Make Fate your accomplice.
                          • Enhance any non-extended action by making a chosen number treated like a 10. Can be used once per day, assuming a full night's rest.
                          Skillful Reappropriation (Phantom Sting Search)
                          • No flavour text.
                          • Exalt can plant evidence on a target without trace.
                          • Same pickpocketing stuff as before, but it can hide an object on someone, and won't be noticed for a time based on Essence, unless it's called attention to. Can reflexively retrieve the item so long as the Exalt can touch the target. Can do this so as to lift it from the target.
                          Reversal of Fortune
                          • You shouldn't steal from Solar Exalted.
                          • Gain 2 auto-successes to detect a pickpocketing attempt. Success at noticing this leaves the thief open to be counter-stolen from.
                          • Pickpocketing gets mildly more interesting...
                          Iron Wolves’ Grasp
                          • The Lawgiver can steal stuff the weapon out of someone's hand.
                          • Alters a disarm gambit to allow an attack after the disarm, and the disarm gets double 9s. Successful steals of artefacts breaks attunement. Thief can spend motes to immediately attune to the weapon. Users of prehensile weapons can use this charm at the range of that weapon.
                          Door-Evading Technique
                          • No door at all, not even one magically locked, can bar the Exalted.
                          • The Solar can step through locked barriers, but not through walls or into locked chests.
                          Flashing Ruse Prana
                          • Solar tears away the mask she is wearing.
                          • Can be disguised in an instant. Used in concert with another Larceny charm, ignore the willpower cost.
                          • I assume this still requires materials with which to disguise oneself? It takes away some of the magic, but it doesn't say that it doesn't.
                          Split Deception Method
                          • The Solar walks through a crowd and wears many faces.
                          • Solar may wear a disguise over a disguise, which can be shown to different people. The Solar can sustain as many disguises as she has Essence.
                          Null Anima Gloves
                          • The Solar is both a demon and a saint, and has the burning Essence-wreathed gloves to prove it.
                          • For 30 seconds or 2 rounds, no member of a criminal organisation or creature of darkness may attack her. Allies get extra successes to run away for a scene. Get a bunch of cool abilities like rerolling a larceny-based action involving her hands once per anima progression, getting a free larceny action once a day, an initiative-stealing attack once per battle, steal Essence from opponents, get a boosted disarm clash attack once per battle, and can attune to an artefact for free once per scene.
                          • Is there a definition for "creature of darkness"? It feels a little too specific to be "those who oppose the Solar", but doesn't scan like a system term.
                          • Are people hesitant to attack because they're too busy going "holy cow, that girl's hands're on fire?" Never mind supernatural prohibitions, that would be my response!
                          • The array of different abilities given by this charm feel like an awful lot to keep track of.
                          • Is there any reason why one charm gives a whole grab-bag of abilities like this? It feels very different to most charms I've seen so far. It's almost enough to make me think you activate them once and then keep the motes committed forever, simply to benefit from the array of effects, and the stopping attacks effect is simply a sideshow.
                          Night’s Eye Meditation
                          • Solar is a master of deception, and knows when she's being challenged.
                          • When an opponent counters a Larceny-based action with Larceny or Investigation, she can count any 10s her opponents roll in her own dice pool.
                          • I assume this gives the double successes to the Solar as well? Not totally clear on that.
                          Unbroken Darkness Approach
                          • The Lawgiver shines in the darkness. But does the darkness understand it??
                          • Get a free full Larceny excellency once per scene. Can also mute any charms used in the same instant as this free excellency.
                          I've noticed that several of these charms (not just Larceny, but in general) suggest character concepts that can use them. This is kind of different from the "Sherlock effect" of the Investigation tree, as that's cumulative; here I'm getting flashes of inspiration from single charms. Has anyone tried running character creation by picking the caste, 15 starting charms and supernal first, buying up their minimums and then going from there? It feels like an interesting exercise... may have to try when I have a new concept in mind. "Let players look at the charms to get ideas for characters" would also be good, but then that would require the charm text to have a brief form...

                          And on we go to Linguistics!
                          Last edited by Xerxes; 05-26-2016, 03:13 AM. Reason: Usual spacing blehness


                          A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
                          Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Xerxes View Post
                            What is Elsewhere? First time I've seen it mentioned.
                            In previous editions it was some other dimension that was just used for storing things. A place for you to banish your weapon/armor/whatever so that you didn't need to worry about carrying them when they were obvious or worry about someone finding them if you left them somewhere. In this edition they have left elsewhere entirely undefined. There are several charms that still summon things from / banishes stuff to elsewhere and nowhere is there any definition of what that means.

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                            • Originally posted by satoshi View Post
                              In this edition they have left elsewhere entirely undefined. There are several charms that still summon things from / banishes stuff to elsewhere and nowhere is there any definition of what that means.
                              Would have been helpful to have that, although I'm also kind of glad that it wasn't defined fully. Having seen the monster that the "removed from the game zone" became in MtG, having a space-that-is-not-a-space-but-is-constantly-referenced can do all kinds of horrific things to a system.


                              A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
                              Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Xerxes View Post
                                Would have been helpful to have that, although I'm also kind of glad that it wasn't defined fully. Having seen the monster that the "removed from the game zone" became in MtG, having a space-that-is-not-a-space-but-is-constantly-referenced can do all kinds of horrific things to a system.
                                Uh, that was fixed when Unhinged added the absolutely-removed-from-the-freaking-game-forever zone. I'm sure the same fix will work here. As soon as charms start referencing that they can steal things from other player's Elsewhere pockets, make an even deeper version of Elsewhere that's called Nowhere or something. Simple, easy, effective.

                                EDIT: and on a serious note Creature of Darkness were fairly strictly defined in the previous edition as basically things that the Unconqured Sun had written down in his little holy book as being bad. The undead, demons, unshaped fey, that kind of thing. I think the problem was that stuff which wasn't mentioned on the list was presumed not to be on it, even if it really should be, like some horror from the underside of Creation that seeks to plunge the suntouched world into shadows. Also some things that were technically CoD but maybe shouldn't be had to have a special rule, like the Righteous Dead, or whatever they were called, basically an army of ghosts that fought to save the world.
                                Last edited by DrLoveMonkey; 05-26-2016, 04:01 AM.

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