Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Crossover

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Crossover

    Hi everyone,

    I am a bit new to the forums but otherwise have been playing V5 for a little bit over a year now. Me and my players finished our first campaign and had a blast. We are planning to do a new one but want to incorporate other supernatural creatures from WOD into. I kinda started writhing some home brew and custom rules too help with the crossover before I found the forums. I was wondering did anyone try to cross platform with other creatures of the night? What did you find worked for you and what did you find was the hardest concepts to incorporate?

  • #2
    Hey Underdog, welcome to the forums. I am a relative newcomer myself, and also a huge fan of World of Darkness crossovers

    In general, it's a topic that provokes, *ahem,* debates. Positions on it range from "this is really cool and clearly a part of authorial intent," to "it's a fun idea, but prioritize the needs of the game you're running rather than trying to treat all game-lines as equally canon," to "it's a horrible idea that ruins everything."

    Out of the gate, one place I can see some potential difficulty is that you are a V5 player. I am not especially familiar with V5, but my understanding is that it has significantly altered the mechanics of the game from previous editions. Where that becomes an issue is that, as far as I know, the other game-lines have not been updated to a "fifth edition" yet. It may be the case that older editions of Werewolf, Mage, etc., can work with the updated rules of V5, if the changes are mostly internal and specific to the Vampire line; changing from Blood Pool to Hunger may have little effect on a crossover game, whereas radically different rules around Health or Willpower could be a huge pain.

    A general issue that World of Darkness crossover games run into is that certain mechanics do not translate properly (or at all) between game-lines. Humanity and Virtues are not present in Werewolf (they are effectively replaced by Werewolf traits like Rage and Gnosis) or Mage. Trying to figure out how a power that affects the Virtue of an NPC that doesn't have Virtues is one example of a place where house-rules are needed. One of the easier solutions to fudge is a way to figure out a value for a non-existent Trait by creating a "ghost-Trait" with a value determined by Traits the character does have; a Werewolf might need to roll Rage or Willpower instead of Self-Control/Instincts, for example.

    Crossover in World of Darkness gets exponentially messier when the "party" itself is a crossover; having a group of Vampires dealing with the wider mysteries of a world that contains Werewolves and Mages is much easier than trying to create a game where a Vampire, a Werewolf, and a Mage are trying to work together. From a purely in-game standpoint, the lore of the various "splats" tends to emphasize misunderstanding and hostility between different groups; Vampires are inherently untrustworthy almost by definition, Werewolves are puritanical crusaders generally speaking, and Mages have a bad habit of turning other "splats" into spell components. Just getting past this, and having your mixed-group function effectively in a world that largely conflicts with that attitude, can be a bunch of work.

    Then there are the mechanical complications. We discussed that a bit above, but it becomes much more difficult when those crossover moments aren't something you can mostly plan for and prepare in advance. Having characters of multiple splats interacting with each mechanically is far more likely to bring up unexpected technical problems than a one-shot NPC you throw at the party. There are more mundane concerns, like the fact that a Vampire character could effectively be "locked out" of half the play-time that a Werewolf or Mage who can go out during the day can enjoy. But the deeper mechanical problem is an utter lack of "balance" between splats. How powerful a character begins, and how powerful a character can become, varies wildly between games. A "starting" Werewolf could easily rip apart an entire party of "starter" Vampires, but the "hypothetical" power-cap of Vampire games theoretically includes ancient undead that can destroy entire communities of Werewolves. And then Mage races on by and leaves the other two in the dust, as a high-level Mage is a decent match for anything short of a demigod when played right.

    This problem of mechanical imbalance is not insurmountable. But the "fluff" equivalent to this "crunch" problem is the huge difference in the themes between the different game-lines. Vampire is a game about people who have become monsters in a shadowy world full of conspiracies ruled by ancient inscrutable blood-gods. Werewolf is about being a monster that is, in their eyes at least, also a holy warrior fighting in a desperate struggle for the fate of the world. Mage, meanwhile, is less about obvious monstrosity, and more about the kind of horror that results from the combination of power and hubris. What I'd consider likely the most valid critique of crossover World of Darkness games is that it can be difficult, or even impossible, to really balance the themes and mood of each game-line against each other when you have characters from different game-lines trying to cooperate. And this is where the mechanical imbalance mentioned above can become a problem. A combat encounter that would be a decent challenge for a starting Werewolf could easily be lethal for a low-level Vampire or Mage. Meanwhile, much of the mystery that makes a Vampire story run could be unraveled by a low-level Mage because information-gathering is their specialty. And if you can create a mystery or political drama that both a Vampire and a Mage could engage with, 9 out of 10 Werewolf characters would be completely useless because "punch the bad thing to death!" is most of their raison d'etre.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thank you for the response, yeah it does seem I will have my work cut out for me. I have a party of Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, Demon and Sin Eater. I had a look at the books, including the core WOD book and had a read of the older ones. My opinion is that while I love the lore in almost all WOD books, some just aren't very user friendly books as it does seem to take a lot of re-reading and page jumping to get answers, there also seem to be some mechanics which can probably be simplified (I know some might disagree, but fun over getting everything a 100% accurate). I also like some of the older additions take on certain powers. I think what I might do is take the core concept from each book and balance them out (effectively writhing my own set of rules for the campaign).
      Ill see how I go about it and maybe share some of what I written on here to see what people think.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Underdog666 View Post
        Thank you for the response, yeah it does seem I will have my work cut out for me. I have a party of Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, Demon and Sin Eater. I had a look at the books, including the core WOD book and had a read of the older ones. My opinion is that while I love the lore in almost all WOD books, some just aren't very user friendly books as it does seem to take a lot of re-reading and page jumping to get answers, there also seem to be some mechanics which can probably be simplified (I know some might disagree, but fun over getting everything a 100% accurate). I also like some of the older additions take on certain powers. I think what I might do is take the core concept from each book and balance them out (effectively writhing my own set of rules for the campaign).
        Ill see how I go about it and maybe share some of what I written on here to see what people think.
        I have noticed another hiccup that needs addressing. There are technically two different "versions" of the World of Darkness; there is the "Old" WoD with Vampire: the Masquerade, and then there is "New" WoD (officially "Chronicles of Darkness" now) with Vampire: the Requiem.

        The reason this is relevant is that V5 is "Old World," but Sin-Eaters are "New World." Based on what you wrote above, you might be mixing versions. Some of the game-lines have books for converting rules from Old to New, and vice versa, but they are mostly separate and have significant mechanical differences.

        The one upside is that New WoD is a bit better for crossover, the rules were made to accommodate it more, though it can still be pretty messy on the fringes.

        PS These forums are for Old World specifically; if you want to run a Chronicles game, there is a different forum for that

        Comment


        • #5
          Yeah I kinda started with Chronicle Forum and got directed here. To be honest the difference between old and new confuse me somewhat. I mean I get that the lore might be somewhat different and I can see that several creatures have different books like Werewolf the Apocalypse and Werewolf the Forsaken. Truth be told I kinda like elements from both that they used.

          Comment


          • #6
            If you like elements of both, and don't mind a ton of work, the Translation Guide books might interest you a bunch

            There are differences in lore and mechanics; Chronicles of Darkness was designed with a core set of rules used by all game-lines to make crossover smoother, and the metaplot/backstory of the Chronicles setting was left more mysterious and open-ended. The "Old" World was actually shut down and replaced by the "New" one, until the 20th Anniversary edition of VtM revealed that there was still lots of money to make off the Old WoD.

            Comment


            • #7
              I see I will take a look at the Translation Guides and get cracking, is it alright were one to post the WORD documents or PDFs here for feedback?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Kharnov View Post
                A general issue that World of Darkness crossover games run into is that certain mechanics do not translate properly (or at all) between game-lines. Humanity and Virtues are not present in Werewolf (they are effectively replaced by Werewolf traits like Rage and Gnosis) or Mage. Trying to figure out how a power that affects the Virtue of an NPC that doesn't have Virtues is one example of a place where house-rules are needed. One of the easier solutions to fudge is a way to figure out a value for a non-existent Trait by creating a "ghost-Trait" with a value determined by Traits the character does have; a Werewolf might need to roll Rage or Willpower instead of Self-Control/Instincts, for example.

                Crossover in World of Darkness gets exponentially messier when the "party" itself is a crossover; having a group of Vampires dealing with the wider mysteries of a world that contains Werewolves and Mages is much easier than trying to create a game where a Vampire, a Werewolf, and a Mage are trying to work together. From a purely in-game standpoint, the lore of the various "splats" tends to emphasize misunderstanding and hostility between different groups; Vampires are inherently untrustworthy almost by definition, Werewolves are puritanical crusaders generally speaking, and Mages have a bad habit of turning other "splats" into spell components. Just getting past this, and having your mixed-group function effectively in a world that largely conflicts with that attitude, can be a bunch of work.
                First I have to disagree. In VTM and again in Hunted Hunters II it is stated, that every other person has Virtues and Humanity too. It is just that the other splats do not mention it and maintining it is useless, unless you are open to the option of getting turned into a Cainite. So yeah for Fera (Garou and other changers) keeping track of humanity is useless. Or other said, it is like playing the Dark Eye and adding boons from "Wege der Vereinigung" ( a german sourcebook how mechanically sex works) if you never plan to have this intercourse.

                Second it is actually easy if the mage (and mayby the cainite too) is a kinfolk and the cainite has reached Golconda because in the English Revised and german V20 Golconda vampires are Hallowed for Garou. There is even a 5 dot Kinfolk merrit for Kinfolk that turned into a vampire. So if you want a crossover, just giving Kinfolk merrit for free or put them into a state where it is clear, that they need to work together. There whas even a description example in Ascension's Landscape (extremly nice auther, you can write him for a free copy if you are to poor for it) if you have an extrem clean technocracy that have enough power to be the cleaning service for the rest of the world too, that Garou would work together with them because both sides agree it is nececary first, to take care of the mess and after you made sure the world you live on will not die it is time to discuss how the world should be.


                As I am from Austria I need to clarify two things.
                First my native language is german and so please point out if the english I write is broken so I can improve.
                Second I do not own VTMV nor any line after M20 because it is not out there and I wait for the translation.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I would keep it simple.

                  Because cWoD splats already don't mesh well together, there's 0 support to mesh then with V5, and adding nWoD splats has it's own book that's also not intended to be used with V5 - If you go to the deep end with only a basic understanding, you will only get entangled with a web of unhelpful rules and theme contradictions. You will be much better served, I think, by taking the genral ideas you and your players want to interpret from the games, and placing then on a mechanics/metaplot framework created by yourself (prob. it would be better to establish the foundation on V5 since that seems to be your forte).

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Aleph View Post
                    I would keep it simple.

                    Because cWoD splats already don't mesh well together, there's 0 support to mesh then with V5, and adding nWoD splats has it's own book that's also not intended to be used with V5 - If you go to the deep end with only a basic understanding, you will only get entangled with a web of unhelpful rules and theme contradictions. You will be much better served, I think, by taking the genral ideas you and your players want to interpret from the games, and placing then on a mechanics/metaplot framework created by yourself (prob. it would be better to establish the foundation on V5 since that seems to be your forte).

                    You know I think Ill do something like that and share it once I am done here to see what people think. I already read books from both old and new WOD now so I would hate to lose all the progress I made there I will see what I brew together and if it is a train wreck ohh well as long as the ride if fun none of us in the group will mind.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Koronus View Post

                      First I have to disagree. In VTM and again in Hunted Hunters II it is stated, that every other person has Virtues and Humanity too. It is just that the other splats do not mention it and maintining it is useless, unless you are open to the option of getting turned into a Cainite. So yeah for Fera (Garou and other changers) keeping track of humanity is useless. Or other said, it is like playing the Dark Eye and adding boons from "Wege der Vereinigung" ( a german sourcebook how mechanically sex works) if you never plan to have this intercourse.

                      Second it is actually easy if the mage (and mayby the cainite too) is a kinfolk and the cainite has reached Golconda because in the English Revised and german V20 Golconda vampires are Hallowed for Garou. There is even a 5 dot Kinfolk merrit for Kinfolk that turned into a vampire. So if you want a crossover, just giving Kinfolk merrit for free or put them into a state where it is clear, that they need to work together. There whas even a description example in Ascension's Landscape (extremly nice auther, you can write him for a free copy if you are to poor for it) if you have an extrem clean technocracy that have enough power to be the cleaning service for the rest of the world too, that Garou would work together with them because both sides agree it is nececary first, to take care of the mess and after you made sure the world you live on will not die it is time to discuss how the world should be.
                      Opening with the statement that anyone can obviously run their games however they like, I think there are problems with both of the arguments that you make here:

                      1) Unless they go out of their way to state that the position explicitly applies across all World of Darkness game-lines, what "Vampire: the Masquerade" rulebooks have to say about the presence or lack of Humanity has no meaning on Werewolf, Mage, or other game-lines. What you've described is a textbook example of having to incorporate mechanics from one game-line that are not present in other game-lines, precisely because the different game-lines have different themes; that's basically my entire argument, that there are both mechanical and thematic conflicts, and they must be resolved in some fashion, which is extra work. Perfectly doable, and I agree with it to the extent that I am pro-crossover myself, but not obviously intended or easy.

                      As an example, a question I've pondered, would you give Mage characters the Humanity Trait in a crossover game?

                      Not exactly a problem, but I'd also like to point out that the only other time I have ever heard this "Golconda Vampires are sacred to Garou" was from you previously citing a German-specific source. No one who reads the English material seems to be familiar with it; I can try and find the equivalent in English versions if you can let me know which texts to search specifically? That doesn't make it wrong, but it makes the canon status dubious I think. It's not entirely unsupported, given early Vampire material had Methuselahs like Menele and Mictlantecuhtli having amiable relations with Werewolves, but that was early material that they consciously moved away from in later editions. Again, dubious.

                      2) Let's look at what you define as "easy":

                      a1) A Kinfolk Mage: Probably the easiest on the list, and still borders on being "lightning strikes twice"; being a Kinfolk is not super common, while being a Mage is like winning a cosmic lottery.

                      a2) Kinfolk Vampire: 19/20 Garou would consider immediately ashing the former Kinfolk the kindest possible response. Depending on how tied the Kinfolk is to Garou culture, they may agree.


                      b) A Vampire in Golconda: you're having to take one of the closest things to a "win condition" in VtM, the equivalent of becoming a Vampire saint or Buddha, and turning it into a necessary pre-condition just to get your characters to avoid murdering each other on sight.


                      c1) A Friendly Neighbourhood Technocracy: This is where what you're describing moves into an explicit rewrite of the setting itself. You're taking the institution behind an attempted supernatural genocide named THE POGROM, and saying "nah, they just wanna help out, clean up the mess. They've got your back "

                      c2) A Garou Nation willing to tag-team with the Friendly Neighbourhood Technocracy: You do understand that, in a crossover world, the Technocracy is completely entwined with the rise of modern society and technology, and that most Garou Tribes regard the Weaver as almost as or equally as bad as the Wyrm?

                      These sorts of things could potentially exist on a small, individual scale; local alliances of convenience, rare cases of friendship across factional/species lines. But the idea of them existing on a large-scale takes the established facts of the setting and twists them into a pretzel. Which goes back to half of my argument: trying to do this almost inevitably screws up some of the themes of the game-lines involved. It can be worth it; I honestly really liked what they did with "Dark Alliance: Vancouver," and regret the fact that they felt the need to smash it with a hammer by Revised because they wanted to emphasize the conflicts more. Again, I enjoy the challenge of figuring out how to make these things work, but it IS a challenge; it is not entirely supported by the mechanics, and it can be difficult finding a balance between the moods and themes of each game-line you involve.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Well it depend on how much you want to tune the technocracy on playing the supernatural police and so both garou and technocracy understand, how much more this threat is important each other. About the english version it is Revised Edition p. 230. About your question of humanity yes I would give mages in crossover games humanity and humanity is if you exclude fera (because technically they are no longer human anymore) and it would be actually very interessting to play Mage with humanity because it would give the whole, power corrupts, absolute power brings hybris, a new angle on how ethical mages behave or how above they see themselves.
                        About the Kinfolk getting grudgely accepted as Vampire, you do not need ask me, I only state, that for PC Vampirekinfolk to get accepted as in not getting immedeataly released, it cost only one freebie more than for a wraith/awaken/changeling kinfolk and this whas said in Kinfolk A breed apart.


                        As I am from Austria I need to clarify two things.
                        First my native language is german and so please point out if the english I write is broken so I can improve.
                        Second I do not own VTMV nor any line after M20 because it is not out there and I wait for the translation.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Koronus View Post
                          it would be actually very interessting to play Mage with humanity because it would give the whole, power corrupts, absolute power brings hybris, a new angle on how ethical mages behave or how above they see themselves.
                          Humanity tenets would clash with the morals of several traditions/crafts. You might want to consider giving Traditions their own Path/Roads to avoid this.

                          Fon once, this is a problem V5 doesn't have - but V5's Humanity it's clearly something humans don't have (as it's mechanically alien - "low humanity" preventing the enjoyment of sex and all that)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Or mayby it just shows that those mages are more mage then human. Path of Enlightment is something that is actually as I said unneeded for them unless they get ghouled because each V20 and HH2 are saying, every human has humanity and there are heinous humans that have low humanity scores but those are not bothering them because they have no beast inside them. Them there is the other problem with Humanity is something we as society made or in us like the soul. Iirc some sources said that the path of humanity whas engrained into them by god.
                            So I will to not make Phipps angry only saying, that my opinion is that this humanity takeover from Requiem whas a mistake.


                            As I am from Austria I need to clarify two things.
                            First my native language is german and so please point out if the english I write is broken so I can improve.
                            Second I do not own VTMV nor any line after M20 because it is not out there and I wait for the translation.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Koronus View Post
                              About the english version it is Revised Edition p. 230.
                              Well, there it is. Interesting, thank you

                              And regarding the question of Mages with Humanity: the question of whether or not they should have it is indeed tied up in the idea of whether or not they are attached to the human moral/psychological condition anymore?

                              I think that either answer has the potential to be interesting. The Humanity system could indeed be a way to put a bit more "teeth" into the theme of Hubris; quite possibly why they did it for MtAw. But I think conversely there's a neat argument to be made about the idea that, like Fera, Mages have actually become "non-human" to some extent; specifically, the idea that True Magick works because the Mage REALLY REALLY BELIEVES definitely sets up the potential that these are people who have become thoroughly detached from "normal" human thinking and reality, best exemplified by Marauders.
                              Last edited by Kharnov; 08-25-2020, 05:49 PM. Reason: Found it

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X