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  • #46
    Originally posted by kalinara View Post
    IMO, the worst idea is the Thrall of the Wyrm stuff in Werewolf. I can appreciate the idea behind it. But I think the Metis one crosses the line hard for me, and I go back and forth on the Homid one. I've never run Werewolf, but I think that if I did, I'd probably either give everyone the lupus version, or discard it entirely based on my players' comfort level.
    Yeah. I honestly never saw much need for anything more detailed than "if you let your Rage get the better of you, you might flip out and murder people (or animals, or spirits, etc.)." Adding eating people or weird perversions on top of that felt unnecessary. I don't think I've ever actually played a game that used those rules, even back in the 90s.
    Last edited by No One of Consequence; 06-27-2020, 11:27 PM.


    What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly. That is the first law of nature.
    Voltaire, "Tolerance" (1764)

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    • #47
      Originally posted by Matt the Bruins fan View Post
      I honestly can't pick a worst idea from WtA because I object to the basic premise of the game on a fundamental level. Taking away lycanthropy as a curse/infection severs the concept of werewolves from about 98% of the folklore and beliefs concerning the subject in the real world, and most of the inspirational fiction as well. Obviously a lot of people find the adventures of eco-terrorist furries with their own made-up mythology and tribal language interesting, but it was just too big a barrier to entry for me.

      What?

      Okay so first off, no. The idea of lycanthropy as a curse in folklore is pretty rare, and the idea of it as an infection is non-present (I mean the idea of diseases being communicable like that is itself pretty recent, after all.) Most often lycanthropy is something a person sought out. In European folklore, this is most often through making a pact with the devil; the potential werewolf is granted an article of clothing, or a salve, or some ritual that will allow them to become a wolf as they please. Sometimes it's a blessing from god - St. Thomas Aquinas is sometimes said to have had the ability to shapeshift into a wolf as one of his miracles. Essentially, lycanthropy is a sorcerous power obtained from a higher (or lower...) spiritual power in folklore. And it's generally believed that this is itself just a Christianization of earlier pagan rituals, cults, and warrior initiation practices. Sometimes htese practices survived relatively unscathed and (relatively) un-condemned post-christianization, particularly in Ireland, Scandinavia, and the Baltic, where werewolves were seen as guardians, goofballs, and flock-tenders, respectively (apparently Baltic werewolves took a "fight wolf with more wolf" philosophy to shepherding)

      The notions of lycanthropy being spread like a disease comes from the hoary old days of 1933, and "The Werewolf of Paris," which is probably just a linear transition from vampirism, on the basis of werewolves and vampires being closely associated in southern Slavic folklore ("a vampire's bite turns you into a vampire, and vampires are said to come from dead werewolves, so maybe a werewolf's bite makes you a werewolf" kind of logic).. of course the notion of a vampire's bite being infectious was itself not even forty years old in 1933, and was intended as a metaphor for syphilis so...)

      Sort of like the full moon and silver bullets, contagious werewolves are a creation of pop culture, not traditional folklore.

      And second, every time I see someone try to describe werewolf as "eco-terrorist furries" or "captain planet" or the like, I always get the feeling i'm dealing with someone trying to look kEwL and EdGy on the internet, via 30 year old snark. Yes, and vampire is nothing but "bondage sluts and sparkleboys" and mage is "harry potter," yadda yadda.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by The Cat Came Back View Post


        What?

        Okay so first off, no. The idea of lycanthropy as a curse in folklore is pretty rare, and the idea of it as an infection is non-present (I mean the idea of diseases being communicable like that is itself pretty recent, after all.) Most often lycanthropy is something a person sought out. In European folklore, this is most often through making a pact with the devil; the potential werewolf is granted an article of clothing, or a salve, or some ritual that will allow them to become a wolf as they please. Sometimes it's a blessing from god - St. Thomas Aquinas is sometimes said to have had the ability to shapeshift into a wolf as one of his miracles. Essentially, lycanthropy is a sorcerous power obtained from a higher (or lower...) spiritual power in folklore. And it's generally believed that this is itself just a Christianization of earlier pagan rituals, cults, and warrior initiation practices. Sometimes htese practices survived relatively unscathed and (relatively) un-condemned post-christianization, particularly in Ireland, Scandinavia, and the Baltic, where werewolves were seen as guardians, goofballs, and flock-tenders, respectively (apparently Baltic werewolves took a "fight wolf with more wolf" philosophy to shepherding)

        The notions of lycanthropy being spread like a disease comes from the hoary old days of 1933, and "The Werewolf of Paris," which is probably just a linear transition from vampirism, on the basis of werewolves and vampires being closely associated in southern Slavic folklore ("a vampire's bite turns you into a vampire, and vampires are said to come from dead werewolves, so maybe a werewolf's bite makes you a werewolf" kind of logic).. of course the notion of a vampire's bite being infectious was itself not even forty years old in 1933, and was intended as a metaphor for syphilis so...)

        Sort of like the full moon and silver bullets, contagious werewolves are a creation of pop culture, not traditional folklore.

        And second, every time I see someone try to describe werewolf as "eco-terrorist furries" or "captain planet" or the like, I always get the feeling i'm dealing with someone trying to look kEwL and EdGy on the internet, via 30 year old snark. Yes, and vampire is nothing but "bondage sluts and sparkleboys" and mage is "harry potter," yadda yadda.
        I totally agree with your last paragraph. And I didn’t know about any of the rest of what you said. Thanks. I really like learning new stuff, especially when it’s about horror or fantasy themes. (That’s actually one of the reasons I hang out in this forum.)


        “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

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        • #49
          Originally posted by Matt the Bruins fan View Post
          I honestly can't pick a worst idea from WtA because I object to the basic premise of the game on a fundamental level. Taking away lycanthropy as a curse/infection severs the concept of werewolves from about 98% of the folklore and beliefs concerning the subject in the real world, and most of the inspirational fiction as well. Obviously a lot of people find the adventures of eco-terrorist furries with their own made-up mythology and tribal language interesting, but it was just too big a barrier to entry for me.


          People before showed that the idea of being werewolf due to a curse in folklore was near innexistent and that the infection never existed until 20th centuries movies, so I won't rub salt in that wound. I simply want to show that the same happen for ALL Wod lines. As so, it's useless to judge one of those based on the folklore of the supernatural creature in question.


          VtM:
          Vampires in folklore are cursed, but they are not created by another vampire, that only appeared for the first time in the novel Dracula, probably as a metaphor for infectious diseases. In legends, vampires were either sorcerers denied eternal rest, the victim of occurances like a dog jumping over the corpse. The idea of vampiric lineage is non existent, so is the weakness to sunlight. While vampires were always described as nocturnal, no weakness to the light of day was mentioned. Even Dracula didn't feared it. The first time a vampire was burned by our star in fiction was in the movie Nosferatu.

          If anything, Kuei-Jin are closer, with their method of creation, to folklore vampires than cainites.

          MtA:
          The idea that belief shapes reality and that all magic is basically chaos magick would have been absurd to any magiscian of history. When you look at actual occult practices, the idea is that magic is the objective use of forces and deities to obtain a result. If anything, most magic and sorcery of the past was very "scientifically" recorded with very specific instructions.

          WtO:
          No matter the mythology, you can't have both life after death and the end of existence in the same cosmology. Ghosts were either cursed individuals condemned to wander for eternity or people with things to achieve before going to their final destination. The idea of oblivion is nonsense on a folklore/mythological standpoint.

          And quickly for Changeling, fairies were never linked to dreams, nor do they need belief to exist or feared banality.



          None of the supernatural beings of the WoD respect folklores, nor should they do. Let's judge the values of that universe on valid critera.

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          • #50
            Worst ideas I've ever heard for WoD? Well, hold my (root) beer for a minutes, cuz I got some funsies.

            ~ A newbie ST wanted to run a game for me and some friends. No problem, he'd run DnD games for us, and they were fun! High powered, but fun! So one of the players asked about generation, if there'd be a hard limit to it, etc. He said make the characters without worrying about generation, and he'd randomly determine our generations based on a d10 roll.

            We assumed he'd be like "half the number rolled is how many dots in Gen you get". Or "the die roll plus (arbitrary number)". We were wrong. The number that came up was the generation. Roll a 7? 7th gen. Roll a 10? 10th gen.

            Roll a 1? Hi, you're Caine now, have funsies! And while nobody got to be Caine... Two of us were 3rd gen, one was 2nd gen, and the rest were scattered across the gamut, the memory of their generations drowned out by the shock of realizing I was now a 3rd generation Ahrimane, and my BFF was a 2nd generation Caitiff (I mean, aren't all 2nd gens basically Caitiff?).

            We never actually played that game because we explained to the newbie ST the badness of that idea and helpfully guided him through the rest of the everything.

            ~But okay, nothing from me can truly top or even reach that in terms of bad ideas. So how about the game that sounds like a bad joke? The game that literally started off as a vampire, a garou and a mummy all walking into a bar?

            Different ST, and the idea wasn't terrible. It was intended to be an interlude game from the normal chronicle, and one where our hodge-podge supernatural thingers group were banding together to try and handle some Big Bad situation. I've seen things like this done before, I've seen some of those games go well, so the idea is sound.

            But you need a lot of prep work. You need to get the players at the same table when they make their characters. Because you just dropped a bombshell of "play anything" to a bunch of weirdo nerds with weirdo things they wanna play. Someone's absolutely going to pick a Black Spiral Dancer, someone else is going to pick a mummy without knowing much about how mummies mechanically operate, someone's gonna want another chance to finally play a goddamn Ahrimane without some wonky dice rolled generation gimmick making me rethink the character, and two people will play mages; one technocrat and one traditionalist. And let us not forget the one lonely fomori. Never forget the lonely fomori.

            After we all told each other before the game started what we were playing, I actually expected this to be a joke game. When the ST said "you all meet up at a bar", I was solidly convinced this was intended to be hilarity-ensuing hijinks. But nope, it was to band together and fight off some shenanigan tomfoolery thinger from whocaresville.

            We technically never left the bar. Because all but one of us were dead. And by the time the mummy decided to go home, there was no longer a bar to even leave.

            The fomori died first. #NeverForgetTheFomori


            Writing up Clanbook: Aabbt

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            • #51
              😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

              OMG that’s too funny

              Ahrimanes are cool 😊. On a not funny note, my headcanon is that the Dark Ages Ahrimanes were all wiped out when Mithras declared a Blood Hunt on the entire bloodline after the battle of Culloden Moor (like in my sig 😊).


              “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

              Comment


              • #52
                Originally posted by No One of Consequence View Post

                Yeah. I honestly never saw much need for anything more detailed than "if you let your Rage get the better of you, you might flip out and murder people (or animals, or spirits, etc.)." Adding eating people or weird perversions on top of that felt unnecessary. I don't think I've ever actually played a game that used those rules, even back in the 90s.
                I don't dig the forced symmetry of "a set of three, directly link everything to the Triat for the sake of complete correspondence!" myself. And if we're rewinding things to 1e, Thrall of the Wyrm, strictly speaking, wouldn't exist, though you might still eat someone if you got too many successes to frenzy. That's functionally identical to chunking them into paste for lupus, though, and we can all do without the super-edgy metis version.

                Though, also if we're rewinding things to 1e, successfully hitting someone with a Rage-point powered attack means that you get to keep the point. Still not as broken as early edition Celerity!

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                • #53
                  I uhh.... like the super edgy metis version. Thrall of the wyrm is all nicely ironic and you' are supposed to be revulsed by it. You are supposed to be horrified by what a disgusting monster you are. It's supposed to be something you absolutely do not want to do.

                  I really don't like how various authors want to sanitize werewolves. On one hand, I think certain tribes had rediculous ideas (All that human sacrifice- please do so in moderation) that needed to be slimmed down, but on the other hand, some authors seem to have some kind of Children Of Gaia syndrome where everybody gets along and nobody does anything bad and like, the biggest killer in garou society definetly isn't duels...

                  There's a power, the one which makes anyone you look at feel an overwhelming need to jump your bones provided you can overcome their willpower. The latest edition had the caveat that it definetly respects the victim's sexual preferences, doesn't work on people who hate you, and really only works on people that would be tempted to fuck you anyway... You can feel a lot less bad for using it now, i guess.

                  Except, y'know, aren't you playing a fucking monster?

                  I think perhaps there should be some restriction but you shouldn't be giving people the benefit of the doubt. Willpower is the key, not -The victim considers the werewolf a prick/the victim is 89% gay so it doesn't work-
                  I think in some cases it shouldn't work (The man absolutely hates and fears vaginas, the werewolf is literally holding a corpse and bragging about all the people he's killed) but in most cases it should push into uncomfortable when it comes to respecting someone's preferences. (maybe a difficulty adjustment would be in order?) Dominate can get people to kill babies (if you roll well enough) but this power cares for people's feelings?
                  People are weak willed and that should be emphasized. Werewolves are monsters and that should be emphasized.


                  Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.

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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                    I uhh.... like the super edgy metis version. Thrall of the wyrm is all nicely ironic and you' are supposed to be revulsed by it. You are supposed to be horrified by what a disgusting monster you are. It's supposed to be something you absolutely do not want to do.

                    I really don't like how various authors want to sanitize werewolves. On one hand, I think certain tribes had rediculous ideas (All that human sacrifice- please do so in moderation) that needed to be slimmed down, but on the other hand, some authors seem to have some kind of Children Of Gaia syndrome where everybody gets along and nobody does anything bad and like, the biggest killer in garou society definetly isn't duels...

                    There's a power, the one which makes anyone you look at feel an overwhelming need to jump your bones provided you can overcome their willpower. The latest edition had the caveat that it definetly respects the victim's sexual preferences, doesn't work on people who hate you, and really only works on people that would be tempted to fuck you anyway... You can feel a lot less bad for using it now, i guess.

                    Except, y'know, aren't you playing a fucking monster?

                    I think perhaps there should be some restriction but you shouldn't be giving people the benefit of the doubt. Willpower is the key, not -The victim considers the werewolf a prick/the victim is 89% gay so it doesn't work-
                    I think in some cases it shouldn't work (The man absolutely hates and fears vaginas, the werewolf is literally holding a corpse and bragging about all the people he's killed) but in most cases it should push into uncomfortable when it comes to respecting someone's preferences. (maybe a difficulty adjustment would be in order?) Dominate can get people to kill babies (if you roll well enough) but this power cares for people's feelings?
                    People are weak willed and that should be emphasized. Werewolves are monsters and that should be emphasized.
                    Gross. I don’t wanna be revulsed when I game.


                    “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

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                    • #55
                      But this edition is supposed to be even more 'personal horror' so...


                      Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.

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                      • #56
                        I think if we're going to use Thrall of the Wyrm, the lupus flaw should be more than sufficient. I don't see any reason for bad dice rolls to turn a player character into a rapist. It not only is in exceedingly poor taste, but is also one of those touchy areas that could really be damaging to anyone who has negative experiences with sexual assault.

                        I don't necessarily have an issue with the idea that NPCs commit acts like rape, but I don't agree that a player should ever be forced to roleplay it under any circumstances.

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                        • #57
                          kalinara thank you


                          “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

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                          • #58
                            I thought Metis Thrall of the wyrm was necrophilia, not rape.


                            Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.

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                            • #59
                              I'm not really any more comfortable with the idea that my character is made to rape a corpse as opposed to a living person, to be honest with you.

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                              • #60
                                Originally posted by Matt the Bruins fan View Post
                                I honestly can't pick a worst idea from WtA because I object to the basic premise of the game on a fundamental level. Taking away lycanthropy as a curse/infection severs the concept of werewolves from about 98% of the folklore and beliefs concerning the subject in the real world, and most of the inspirational fiction as well. Obviously a lot of people find the adventures of eco-terrorist furries with their own made-up mythology and tribal language interesting, but it was just too big a barrier to entry for me.
                                As others have commented, actual werewolf folklore isn't based on curse or infections. Instead, werewolves are petty magicians who have been given some kind of magical device (usually from the Devil) to turn into a wolf so they can prey on the livestock of their neighbors and torment their fellow man. The curse/infection angle comes almost entirely from 20th century movies inspired by the werewolf legends.

                                However, simply replace "folklore and beliefs" with "pop culture" and your statement holds up well. I think some of the criticizing commenters should keep this in mind. Nitpicking your statement doesn't nullify your central argument.

                                Players (or prospective players) have certain genre expectations when they come to a game. This can be general (this is a fantasy game, right? So there's going to be elves and dwarves and orcs in it.) or it can be specific (both Star Trek and Star Wars are forms of science fiction, but each has setting specific information that would be out of place in the other). If your Star Trek game has the Force, Bene Gesserits, and Green Lanterns, expect a lot of complaints from most players who actually wanted a Star Trek game. So when one mentions there is a game called Werewolf where you play a werewolf, many people are going into the game thinking it is going to meet some level of expectations - which is heavily based on pop culture.

                                I had the exact same reaction as you when the game first came out. Since I was aware of both the pop culture movies and real folklore, I didn't know what to expect. I was thinking it'd be based on the former, but hoping it'd include some of the latter as well. Instead, what I read caused me to go head scratching. I didn't play it for a long time because it didn't seem like a game about werewolves, but a completely different kind of creature they slapped the werewolf label on. It took an offhand comment by a friend before things "clicked" in my mind, and I understood the game.

                                There's no problem with playing with the defining elements and deviating from them. But at the core, certain genre expectations need to be met.

                                Now for any of these WoD games, it is a mash of various concepts, often contradictory, to get something that is recognizably as a vampire, werewolf, wizard, etc. I think vampire did this very well. You are recognizably playing a vampire whether you use Bela Lugosi's Dracula, Anne Rice, Hammer Horror movies, Lost Boys, or most other versions. You could pick one of those movies and books, and run a close approximation to them, albeit with certain setting differences. Werewolf didn't do this very well with its elements. It is much harder to use the game to simulate something like The Wolf Man, An American Werewolf in London, The Howling, or Wolf. Not impossible. But much harder. It's not as natural an adaptation as you could do with Vampire.

                                Werewolf did have some concepts that mapped very well to pop culture. First edition talked about Lunatics. The Curse is very appropriate. And many Lost Cub concepts can fit as well. And Ronin could be used here too. But it is very incomplete. The original aspects of the WoD's Garou overwhelm them, and they are quickly dropped as relevant elements. How often are Lunatics referenced after Valkenburg Foundation? How many NPCs have something like that in their background? How many NPCs and sourcebooks accurately reflect the Curse? How well does the game support a PC playing a tormented Larry Talbot-like Ronin with the rest of the game group? And isn't there anything else I can do besides be an eco-terrorist?

                                Now I think it is very possible for the game to include pop culture and folklore elements in the setting much more prominently, and not contradict the established setting. In fact, given enough thought, I think it's fairly easy to do. The problem is that the game as published didn't. Players and STs have much more work to do to bring those elements out.

                                Here are the workarounds I do so the game seems more like something outsiders to the WoD fanbase think about when they hear werewolf:

                                I emphasize elements like Lunatics, Lost Cubs, and the Curse. And I heavily use the Merits and Flaws that simulate pop culture elements (such as Forced or Banned Transformations) for NPCs, and encourage their use as an easy way for PCs to get more character creation points.

                                I make a much larger population of Ronin in the setting, and allow a portion of them to safely interact with the Garou so that Ronin PCs are an option in some way (in the same way that Caitiff are in Vampire, or Orphans in Mage).

                                I add elements to the setting in order to include more pop culture expectations. For example, a common way for Garou to "trigger" the First Change is to bite the person in wolf form. The wolf form's saliva often acts as a "trigger" to a delayed Change. This isn't needed for every cub. But it often helps for some late changers, and is usually used to help Lost Cubs make the transition. Likewise, instead of Lunatics being Garou who don't change, many Lunatics are Garou who change involuntarily and whose human minds are shut down (more like an animal instead of being in Frenzy). I also have things like wolfsbane more prevalent in the setting - this plant spirit really does not like werewolves, and this plant is ALWAYS awakened in the presence of Garou. I often have clueless kinfolk refer to things like "our family is cursed" in reference to the stories of werewolf transformations in their family's history. And even kinfolk who do know the secret of the Garou and support them, are often depicted in Folk Horror kind of ways that should creep out or scare meddling outsiders curious about the strange habits of their new neighbors.

                                To increase folklore elements, I have adopted lots of them to the game as well. In fact, one of my first threads I created on this forum was to describe them.

                                Lastly, I greatly expanded the kind of threats the Garou deal with so it is more than a political wish list of left wing radicals. I like enemies that represent traditional folklore monsters, cosmic horror, and pulp menaces. They can all be easily reskinned as somehow related to the Wyrm and the game's specific mythology and original elements.

                                Once you show that the game does meet new player expectations, it is much easier to introduce them to original elements of the WoD Garou and show how they all blend together. But for some players, them not being able to see those elements means they can't use pop culture hooks in their mind for character creation or know what to expect, so they flee from the game. It's a self-imposed obstacle of the game.

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