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What is Changeling About?

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  • What is Changeling About?

    One of the things that distinguishes WoD from other roleplaying games is the symbolism. The games are about something. It's wrapped in a shell of metaphor and allegory, but they have meaning.
    It makes sense that Changeling would be the fifth of the five core games because it's self-referential to the other games in the line. It is a punctuation mark at the end of the story.

    Because Changeling is about roleplaying games.

    I am a Changeling—me, personally. In an imaginary fantasy world that neither a casual passersby, nor my wife, nor my co-workers can see, I am Ljamm, barbarian/bard on a quest for the king to rescue the silver dragon from her captor.

    But, shit, sometimes I've got a lot of grading to do before the end of the semester so I have to skip D&D for a week. So that week Ljamm is defeated on a battlefield he had no power over.

    Maybe I get to the point where I can't find the time to be Ljamm. Or I'm shamed into giving it up because playing pretend is stupid and childish. Or I just lose the knack and forget how. If that happens, Ljamm dies far more completely than if he'd been slain on his quest.

    But Ljamm can't be my only priority. If I make everything about him, I go into Bedlam. As great as playing D&D full-time might be, I would be undone.

    When I realized the underlying metaphor of Changeling: The Dreaming, a lot of the ambiguities of Banality and Glamour suddenly made a lot more sense. I can't wait for C20, but until then, I'll find the Glamour in other games and keep my fae mein alive in those dreams.

    happy dreaming


  • #2
    Yes, that's one of the more popular interpretations. It's also about growing old in general, and being creative in general, and living (again, in general). Or it can just be pure escapist fantasy. There's a vivid legacy of stories about everyday people slipping off into magical worlds, and it taps that vein well.


    • #3
      I duuno. For me changeling was always interesting, like a definite high fantasy setting crossed over with urban fantasy. The world, beneath the magical veil, stack of layers upon layers with no bottom. Puzzling the pieces of deep lore and meeting larger, than life characters walking on earth in guise of extraordinary and mundane people.

      I think it would've been interesting to see changelings to fight off both Banality and Fomori and Thuatha de Dannan (not necessary through war and death), achieve true freedom and control over their destinies, opening the gates of Spring, blurring the lines between dreaming and reality once more, allowing dreamers and chimera to intermingle freely. For good or ill.



      • #4
        Yeah, but what meaning do I as a player draw from that?

        I figured I wasn't the only person who'd drawn that connection, but I find myself always having to explain it in those terms to people who've only played Vampire, Werewolf, or Mage.


        • #5
          Im still new on Changeling. But to me, changeling is like the David Bowie song said it best "We Could be Heroes, Just for one Day."
          Its about the adventure of a life time, while balancing your responsibilities...Weird, i cant stop thinking of the movie The Incredibles while writing down this lines

          Forum's Official's Joker and Trickster. Pardon my bad english, aint my first language (I Speak Spanish).
          ST: DtF, HtR, WtO, MtA
          Signature Chars: Crowley (hakalu), Joe The Nuwisha (WtA)
          Changelings: be afraid of the Technocracian High Five of Doom


          • #6
            Originally posted by GogariGlenRoss View Post
            Yeah, but what meaning do I as a player draw from that?

            I figured I wasn't the only person who'd drawn that connection, but I find myself always having to explain it in those terms to people who've only played Vampire, Werewolf, or Mage.
            Whatever meaning you want?



            • #7
              I've felt the same way about Changeling when I realized that almost all of my friends who used to play RPG left it behind their lives through the years.
              Now I'm 33 and it's really hard to find someone at my age to play and I don't feel comfortable to play with teenagers. I've spent two years far from RPGs.. then, lucky me, I've found people in their 20s and 30s searching on the internet (although we actually play personally, live).
              Those gap years in my life as a RPG player made me think how difficult and rare is to be a Grump. Life/banality is not a cold cruel force. It's sparkling and seductive. It evolves you and when you realize you don't have time to these things.


              • #8
                I have similar issues, though I have learned that college age students really appreciate an experienced ST. At my age, I doubt I could be a PC anymore because I enjoy being an ST. I enjoy creating a story for my players and I enjoy making my player's laugh so hard that they cannot breath or cry so hard that they need a half hour break to deal with the emotions.

                When it comes to Changeling, I see the game as being about dreams and nightmares. Within the Dreaming, my players can participate in a million different dreams in a day because time does not flow equally on the Dreaming as it does in the Real World. In my Changeling campaigns, I have had characters quest for Dream Realms where a year passes for every day in the real world and, while they might not remember much of their experiences, they come back to the real world with twenty sessions worth of experience points.


                • #9
                  I'm 32 now, my son will be 5 months old in just 2 days... I hope that, when I'm 50 and he is 18, I can be ST for him and his friends, and that's how a Grump helps the childlings to grow up

                  And yes, it's hard to find other Grumps like us who haven't been lost to banality yet


                  • #10
                    I just wanted to say I love everything about thread. Long live the Dreaming for us Grumps.

                    May you live in interesting times

                    Storyteller of Sun Forged Oath and The Hakura Chronicle.