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History lessons - how to fit everything in the cWoD

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  • History lessons - how to fit everything in the cWoD

    The Impergium, the great flood, the first and second citties, the Fae war of the courts, the sundering of changelling, the great Maelstroms, the Rage wars, the anarchist revolt, the advent of reason, the rise of the Consensus, the creation of the Camarilla and Sabbatt, the birth of the Tremere and Giovanni, the council of the 9 Traditions, the rise of the Technocratic Union, the Inquisition, the destruction of Charon, the destruction of the Bunyup... How can anyone mix all this toghether?

  • #2
    To really make it all mix together? Fairly, without any gameline getting majorly shafted?
    Next to impossible. People have been trying for a long time.

    The world's origin stories of the gamelines clash, the metaphysics of the gameworlds clash, the hidden reasons behind political events clash, who actually controls the world's economy clash. To make it all mesh together, you'd have to compromise and tweak In each case and event and go 'in this case gameline X is right as it works better, perhaps with adjustments for gameline Y and Z'.

    I think the only gamelines that mainly avoid issues are Changeling and Wraith, on account of Changeling not having big global events (aside of the Fae leaving), and Wraith being its own thing mostly containted in the Low Umbra/Shadowlands.

    Several of the WoD storyteller books give simple but effective advice:
    "If you are playing a gameline X game, treat gameline X as correct and primary. Use gameline Y's stuff if you want, as long as it doesn't conflict"

    The only gameline that officially tried to merge the world origin stories is Demon, and it basically did it by saying 'All the different views were wrong and just an aspect of the same thing happening, but clearly only the Demons know the objective truth.'. Which pretty much was the equivalent of shafting all the other gameline's origin stories' actual importance and truth. Heh.
    Last edited by Ambrosia; 01-18-2017, 03:00 AM.


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    • #3
      Originally posted by Ambrosia View Post

      The only gameline that officially tried to merge the world origin stories is Demon, and it basically did it by saying 'All the different views were wrong and just an aspect of the same thing happening, but clearly only the Demons know the objective truth.'. Which pretty much was the equivalent of shafting all the other gameline's origin stories' actual importance and truth. Heh.
      To be fair (which people seldom are when Demon seems to be trodding on their pet mythology), Demon did state unequivocally that the Demons themselves were unreliable witnesses. The world wasn't at all what it was when they were thrown into the Abyss. It didn't even vaguely function the way it does now. And they are trying to remember it with their memories all mixed up in a limited meat brain in this new and limited world. So, though they can remember that it was different, they themselves aren't even really capable of comprehending what those differences were except by imperfect analogy (and a lot of nostalgia and various other mixed up emotive states).

      It's like they were three dimensional and now they are two (like everyone else) and they are trying to imagine what "depth/height" was like and then trying to remember events that happened at various "heights" all mapped out flat. Oh, and now there's no color. And the vectors are squashed. And time is linear and unidirectional. And meaning and substance aren't related. Cause and effect are related in a very boring way.

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      • #4
        Not to forget that all lines can also be equally wrong.


        Eu prefiro ser essa metamorfose ambulante,
        Do que ter aquela velha opinião formada sobre tudo,
        Sobre o que é o amor, sobre que eu nem sei quem sou.
        É chato chegar a um objetivo num instante,
        Eu prefiro ser essa metamorfose ambulante.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
          Not to forget that all lines can also be equally wrong.
          But how would you grade what parts score for right or wrong unless you had a definite aim for what the resulting crossover-o-rama was going to look like?

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          • #6
            Paradoxically, the gameline in most agreement with the scientific concensus is WTA, as some of the Rokea are old enough to remember the dinosaurs (Rokea are immortal and are really good at surviving). After the fall of the Second City, WtA and VtM concur on dates, which suggests that the Antediluvian Kindred may be refugees from the Astral Umbra.

            If that was the case, Caine would be an Incarna created by the Godhead of the Astral Umbra to represent the concept of Betrayal who figured out how to become something else. He created the 2nd and 3rd Generation within his Astral Realm and kicked out the 3rd Generation when they killed the 2nd Generation. The 3rd Generation possessed mortals and transformed them into the first Kindred (which would make Kindred strangely like the Changeling interpretation of their origin). It would also explain some of the Mage confusion with the nature of the Kindred and why Risen can learn some Kindred Disciplines (Risen being similar to the first Kindred).

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            • #7
              My advice?

              First: give up the notion of one convenient, unified timeline and the "this is how things happened and that was how the world was created" approach of other rpgs and worlds.

              Second: base things on the fact that people are fallible. Memories are fallible, even the memories of beings like methuselahs and mokolé. Oral tradition is extremely fallible. That that garou say something doesn't make it true, it's a myth. Just because something is in a written source, like the Book of Nod doesn't make it true either, just like in real life. Oh, people are whining about Demon, but honestly, demons don't have the truth either. Their God could have been a lot of things. Just because a game was based on Judeo-Christian mythology and another on animistic faith systems doesn't necessiate that either of them have to be exclusively true.

              IMO, when you embrace that no one has the ultimate truth, just their specific mythos, suddenly the "incompatible" worldviews and creation stories start to matter much less. Accidentally that's how the real world works. Different people and religions have very different ideas about how creation works and how it came to exist.

              In my book the different critters having different stories don't deride the game, on the contrary, it adds to it.

              Going back to history: to me, everything earlier than the high middle ages is extremely fragmented, just like in real life. Rome, we know a bit more about, but that's it. Individuals from those ages, like methuselahs usually aren't willing to give up their knowledge, but if they are, they are still individuals and they can't remember something that didn't happen with them personally in an age before fast travel and communication. Even the antediluvians and even Caine are just persons.

              Or, to put it differently, what a rokea would remeber? Swimming, swimming, swimming. A Plesiosaurus here, an early whale there. Bajilion of fish. More swimming. A tasty seal from not so long ago. History tends to not happening in the deep oceans.

              Everything before the great ancient civilizations is basically a myth and no one knows.


              If nothing worked, then let's think!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by PMárk View Post
                Or, to put it differently, what a rokea would remeber? Swimming, swimming, swimming. A Plesiosaurus here, an early whale there. Bajilion of fish. More swimming. A tasty seal from not so long ago. History tends to not happening in the deep oceans.

                Everything before the great ancient civilizations is basically a myth and no one knows.
                Lol, that was really funny. I think I just found the most boring and bored critters of WoD haha

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                • #9
                  Some crossover metaplot is VERY problematic thou, because it need really big extrapolations. I guess, imho, that the worse of all is the Union of the Technocratic Conventions, or the Technocracy. Oh, boy, were should we begin...

                  Ok, lets do this. In Mage, the Union is almost omnipresent and omnipowerful

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                  • #10
                    And that's the thing about the Technocracy. It only makes any sense if they truly control the world. Thats how this group were designed... It loses it's meaning if it is just a bunch of technomancers with limited meaning struggling for power against equal rivals. The Union only makes sense as being the supernaturals cops, and all transgressors are supose to need to work below its radar or risking get caught. Its like the police vs mobs; there will always be gangsters in the world, but they need to be able to work at low profile, they dont get free reign to operate fully in the open.

                    Those assumptions, however, are far from the truth in ANY other game.

                    How often have a Vampire story ever told about an Elder captured by an spaceship from another dimension?
                    In Mage, the Order of Reason began a cleasing of the world during middle ages. Sorcerous and witches, demons, crazy beings from the Beyond... All would have to hide or die. Well, you could link that to the Shatering in CtD and the rise of banality, ok... But in Vampire, the Camarilla is created about the same period as a protection against the very mundane Inquisition.... How disappointing.
                    You COULD make a leap of faith here and say that this mundane Inquisition were just a cover for a bigger Order of Reason conspiration. That's fine by me. Oh, and lets not forget the crucial point were both world collide (violently): the rise of the Tremere clan.

                    The Tremere are the beloved ones of the writers of VtM, that is evident everywhere. Fighting the mighty Tzimisce, they found time to capture gangrels and nosferatus, create an entire new bloodline that is perhaps the most peculiar of all, fight all the houses of the Order of Hermes, and climb the generation ladder of the kindred up to the top, and at the same time creating the most specific and versatile of the vampiric powers. All that in their first centuries as neonates. And if thats not enough, they hunted an entire clan to extinction, meanwhile managing to create important connections amongst the kindred that allowed them to became of the the founders and big shots of the Camarilla. Beyond any doubt, they are White Wolf little beloved ones.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Karlgust View Post

                      Lol, that was really funny. I think I just found the most boring and bored critters of WoD haha
                      What I read about them indicates this. Before the underwater nuclear bomb experiments, they didn't do an awfully lot with the surface world. It just didn't bother them. Moreover, their reason of being is survival. That's a bit contradictory with going out to the surface and doing things and meddling with others.

                      Ok, lets do this. In Mage, the Union is almost omnipresent and omnipowerful
                      It depends on which version do you use and how much do you want to ST them as that. In recent books, like the revised era, M20 and the new convention books they aren1t so much like that. They like to picture themselves as such and sure, the Traditions are also buying into the omnipresent enemy thing, because that's easier to rally against. But according the books I read (and I admit I didn't read a lot of 1e-2e books yet) they really aren't that way. They have very limited resources, most importantly in the manpower side of things. They're sretching very thin, because there's a very limited number of people awakening in a given time and they have only a portion of them. Yes, they have fingers in a lot of pies and they have access to a lot of things, like government institutions and law enforcement but they can't survey everything constantly and you don't want to share inner things with the sleeper subordinates, or send said subordinates against supernatural threats. Yes, if you are making noise and bring attention on yourself and becoming a major problem, they could strike with a lot of concentrated force, but normally they can't monitor everything an be everywhere.

                      Or look at it that way: if they were really omnipresent and omnipowerfull, they'd have eradicated the traditions and every other supernatural critters a long time ago. But they didn't, because they can't.

                      Honestly, I don't agree with you conclusion that they make sense only as an omnipresent thing. Yes they're powerful, but they aren't the only ones. They don't clash with the Camarilla, or the Pentex in all-out war, because in reality, you go to war, if you have a reasonably good chance to win without too much loss knowing if you lose too much, a laughing third party would saunter in and swipe the floor with you. That, and Vampires tend to be minding their own business and stay out of the way. Until they don't and then, you'd need to bring out the bombs and sun-lasers.

                      Being the most powerful group in any given game doesn't necessiate in my book that they must control everything. Yes, they likely the biggest dog in WoD, but don't think in absolutes, they're other not much smaller dogs. They could be menacing, extremely powerful and dangerous without invalidating every other group, IMO.
                      Last edited by PMárk; 01-18-2017, 11:27 PM.


                      If nothing worked, then let's think!

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                      • #12
                        But why did the little Tremere crossed the tzimisce road?

                        Well, first of all, the Tremere were MAGES. Not sorcerous, not stage tricksters. They were Awakened.

                        But not just anyone: they were of the founding houses of the Hermetic Order. Very specific.

                        So, why did Tremere decided to become a Vampire?

                        Well... He felt "a disturbance in the force". He predicted that his imortal alchemical drugs would stop working, after centuries of using them just fine, thanks.

                        But... WHY? Why would they stop working out of the blue?

                        Because of the SCOURGE (PARADOX). Basically, Tremere divinated a world were mages wouldn't be able to get away with massing with the reality any more.

                        But... What's the orign of the Scourge?

                        It comes from the Consensus.

                        Thing is, the Consensus were the thing that the Order of Reason were creating. No Order of Reason, no Consensus, no Scourge, no Tremere vampires. Simple.

                        And we can't just remove the Tremere from VtM, that would mess things up... No Tremere, the Salubri are back, no anarchist revolt, no Camarilla, no Sabbat (Im now pretty sure that all of that must be the work of an Entropy máster... Just picture the image of an Entropy 5 effect on Tremere that made him "imagine a world with no magik. Funny idea).

                        So, the Order of Reason is a NECESSITY for VtM... Even if all that chain of events is invisible to ALL kindred

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                        • #13
                          The thing is... How many times have the Order of Reason or its child the Technocracy EVER dealt with the kindred?

                          Well, you'll hear talks (mostly by the side of the Union) about "dealing with those deviants" or using as subjects on their Labs. But THAT'S IT.

                          That is, until the Union nuked the Ravnos third generation and pratically summoning the Sun on him while he were having a small heated discussion with 5 kuei jin titans.

                          What???

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Karlgust View Post
                            The Impergium, the great flood, the first and second citties, the Fae war of the courts, the sundering of changelling, the great Maelstroms, the Rage wars, the anarchist revolt, the advent of reason, the rise of the Consensus, the creation of the Camarilla and Sabbatt, the birth of the Tremere and Giovanni, the council of the 9 Traditions, the rise of the Technocratic Union, the Inquisition, the destruction of Charon, the destruction of the Bunyup... How can anyone mix all this toghether?
                            Lean into the subjective reality bits and assume Werewolves and Vampires (for example) have interacted with different paradigms of ancient history (to use Mage terminology) - one long involving geological epochs, the other relatively short and Creationist. Demon reinforces this idea with its description of how the world was more "layered" in the pst, and something that takes millions of years on one layer can occur in six days on another.

                            The layers interact and continuous events are reflected between them. If we use the idea from "Ascension" of Ixion being the first kinslayer as the first act of magic, and obviously think of this in terms of Cain as well - that makes the Curse of Caine the first Paradox, which may explain why Awakened Magic can't permanently cure it (at least without Telos, the 10th sphere, which was severed from the world by that first murder).

                            If we then think of cain slaying Abel as a metaphor for the Neolithic agricultural revolution (Cain was a farmer, Abel a herder like the nomads the farming societies supplanted in the ancient Middle East) - then this also makes sense as the Weaver capturing the Balance Wyrm in its webs, breaking the cycle of humans obeying the natural cycle of resources and instead starting to build settled civilization by making resources grow to fit their population. The loss of Telos and fall of the Balance Wyrm fit together nicely.


                            Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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                            • #15
                              And it gets even worse for other games... For example, the Pentex, probably the greatest enemy of ALL the shapeshifters, is part of the Union. A small part of it, to be honest. The entire Pentex is inside the Division Q, a Methodology of the Syndicate. Ok, lets give it some guessed numbers to try to understand: the Syndicate is one out if 5 conventions. Perhaps, Division Q of the Syndicate answers for about one fifth of the entire Syndicate. And Pentex is half of that Methodology. So, 5 x 5 x 2 = 50. That means that the feared organization of the Wyrm answers for only 1/50 of the amount of the power of the Union.

                              That's fine, the Union is supposed to be "The Big Brother". That's it's core concept. So, when you say that half of the Fera's enemies are just a fraction of the bulk of the power of the Union, it fits the concept of an all knowing, all powerful secret conspiration.

                              But... How many Garou EVER were gunned down by furious Hit Marks? How many KNOW Caerns were ever sanitized by the VE Qui La Machinae? How many know allied totem spirits of the Garou were EVER destroyed by starships?

                              The games intermingle at very important pivotal moments (like the Tremere, the death of Ravnos, the Pentex), but other than those, is as if they never relate.

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