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  • C20 African Kiths, and some questions

    I'm so glad that C20 introduced more Kiths to non-Western cultures/dreams. But all I know about Changeling and the Kiths comes from the Unofficial White Wolf Wiki, and some forum interaction.

    1. Would someone please give a brief description (or links to such) of the Kiths that don't have functional (blue) links on this list: ?
    https://whitewolf.fandom.com/wiki/Kith_(WOD)

    2. Now that there're more in Africa than just the Eshu, what about the Oba? Are they still a subset of the Eshu 'Kith', or are they a separate 'Kith' analogous to the Sidhe?

    3. Do the vague groupings of 'Kiths' outside of Europe have collective names analogous to Kithain and Nunnehi? I can't consider Eshu a valid name for non-Eshu African 'Kiths', for example. For that matter, are there words for non-Kithain 'Kith'-equivalents?

    4. Mami Wata: Why aren't they Water Inanimae? And are there any specific names or regional variations for the different Phyla outside of Europe?

    5. Is there an African Kith of dreams of heat, desert mirages, and thirst, analogous to Redcaps? Should there be?
    Last edited by Erinys; 11-16-2020, 03:31 PM.


    I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
    Exalted and cWoD book list. Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors.

  • #2
    So, checking against the C20 Player's Guide, the red-linked ones probably aren't official for the tabletop game. No idea what they might have done with Mami Wata, or whether or not they actually are Water Inanimae. No official African kith concerned with heat, mirages, or thirst.

    2) Walking the line, I think. On the one hand, oba are their own kith in the C20 core, but on the other, still focused on serving as the eshu ruling body. No expansion of their role yet.

    3) The native fae of Australia are Spirit Beings. The fae of the Middle East are jinn (Capital-J Jinn includes what the Kithain call Prodigals, which the Middle Eastern fae see as extended family.)


    Scion 2E: What We Know - A wiki compiling info on second edition Scion.

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    • #3
      I’ll try to do what I can, with the preface that I try to understand Changeling and that I don’t pretend to be an anthropologist or an expert in African culture, continental or diaspora, contemporary or historical.

      1. To make, what are very summarized notes:
      •Biloko (sing. Eloko); this kith emphasizes the value of tradition and heritage, being tightly bound to their culture and community and being wary of outsiders
      •Okubili; level-headed and attuned to their past lives and focused on maintaining balance in all their current lives, this kith loves to teach but sometimes become wrapped up in the concerns of past lives
      •Djedi; lovers of society, partying and merriment, the Djedi are instant celebrities who are as gifted with sorcery as they are cursed with blatancy
      •Kuino; hopeful, ambitious, and industrious - this kith is made up of the drive to achieve success and better living, though they must beware greed and the loss of their sacred objects on that quest
      •Obambo; this kith is made up of gifted explorers and adventurers who know all the tricks of exploring the Land of Ancient Dreams and getting away with it and the spoils, as affable as they seem though they are dangerous when their beloved are threatened

      2. Due to their shared history and culture, I would still consider the Oba and the Eshu to be connected as they ever were, just with the eternal understanding that the Oba are the ruling members of the kith and stewards of the ancient ways and sacred places while the Eshu make up the explorers and wanderers that form the body of the kith

      3. None canonically although I agree that there should be some term, even though it would have to walk the line between being universal enough to function for all of Africa as ‘kith’ does for Europe while not being so specific as to be related to only certain traditions. My first idea would be ‘loa’ but I doubt that would work so in the mean time I use ‘kith’ as the over all term and assume every African Changeling uses their own regionally and culturally relevant term.

      4. I imagine the reason has to do with the fact that the book had limited room to include all the kiths that I’m sure they wanted to and that those specifically might have been better seen as Inanimae rather then Kithain, in the sense we typically mean, so I have to imagine this is a case where homebrew would be necessary and thankfully their are guidelines in C20 to assist that process.

      5. Not canonically but I’m sure there are some figures that could be translated into kiths but that they have yet to be so it would require some homebrewing element most likely.

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      • #4
        -+1. Would someone please give a brief description (or links to such) of the Kiths that don't have functional (blue) links on this list: ?kij
        https://whitewolf.fandom.com/wiki/Kith_(WOD). That page is empty now....odd....

        2. Now that there're more in Africa than just the Eshu, what about the Oba? Are they still a subset of the Eshu 'Kith', or are they a separate 'Kith' analogous to the Sidhe? I would say a seperate Kith as making them part of Eshu was kind of a kludge.

        3. Do the vague groupings of 'Kiths' outside of Europe have collective names analogous to Kithain and Nunnehi? I can't consider Eshu a valid name for non-Eshu African 'Kiths', for example. For that matter, are there words for non-Kithain 'Kith'-equivalents? As said above each region has their own term for this. Spirit Beings etc.

        4. Mami Wata: Why aren't they Water Inanimae? And are there any specific names or regional variations for the different Phyla outside of Europe? Mami Wata have a worship aspect that puts them more into the Changeling than Inanimae bracket*

        5. Is there an African Kith of dreams of heat, desert mirages, and thirst, analogous to Redcaps? Should there be? Nothing completely analagous but theres stuff like:
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aigamuxa

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        • #5
          Darn dang link parser. Add the ) to the end of the URL and it'll work again.

          Thank you all for the info.
          2. It seems there isn't agreement about what the Oba ought to be, but mechanically are they the same as Eshu or separate?

          3. The only name I could think up for "all African Changelings" is Children of the Orisha, which would basically just be what the Eshu and Oba call them.

          5. With exceedingly limited and brief research, I thought that Ahl al-Trab seemed like a potential African desert analog to Redcaps. Dreams of heat, sun, thirst, mirages, sandstorms, and exhaustion while searching for an oasis. They don't really drink oases dry... those "oases" were mirages.


          I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
          Exalted and cWoD book list. Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors.

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          • #6
            Orisha would work for a large section of West African 'Kith' but the word is essentially meaningless outside of those geographical bounds except for its ties to the Carribean and Santeria etc.

            I like Ahl al-Trab...they're pretty tied to the Tuareg culture but that covers a fair area of the Sahara, you'd need to look further if your looking further south or east on the continent.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Damian May View Post
              Orisha would work for a large section of West African 'Kith' but the word is essentially meaningless outside of those geographical bounds except for its ties to the Carribean and Santeria etc.

              I like Ahl al-Trab...they're pretty tied to the Tuareg culture but that covers a fair area of the Sahara, you'd need to look further if your looking further south or east on the continent.
              You aren't going to get a uniform term that applies to them all so Orisha is just as suitable a name as any other. Nunnehi after all covers at least one whole continent, in 1st ed they talked about them also including South America.


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              • #8
                And Nunnehi is just a Cherokee name, right? There's be no inherent reason it has any meaning outside the southeastern cultures.

                It seems odd to me that there isn't a more widespread African 'kith' incarnating dreams of kings and other rulers. The idea of monarchy is as much a thing among some/many Africans as it is in Europe, though not universal. Surely there are some commonalities to what makes a legitimate/ideal/legendary king, even though African royalty haven't necessarily all been screwing each other strategically allying their dynasties for the last millennium. But the Oba are specific to just one culture. I think they might make more sense as a house.

                On the other hand, maybe the Kithain only have a shared name for themselves (at least in western Europe) because they have been ruled by the Sidhe and kind of united in one meta-society. And yet some Sidhe houses and other Kiths have their own words for Fae and Changeligns in general, according to the wiki.
                Last edited by Erinys; 11-17-2020, 12:54 AM.


                I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
                Exalted and cWoD book list. Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors.

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                • #9
                  Yeah the Nunnehi even doubles up and uses an alternate spelling the Nanehi as a specific Kith. But regardless of the language the meaning of omnipresent folk is a fitting name.

                  The Eshu Book expands much of how Preplayersguide works. Including regional names for the kiths. But why the Eshu work for the Continent is because they are the Travelers Kith and they spread far and quick and would be a commonality for the Continent early on. Oba is just the Kings of the Eshu and the Eshu kind of were described being a big family with the other kiths.

                  I like the Djedi, but it feels like they could have use an actual type of being rather then just choosing a specific legendary figure and saying he was just one of many.


                  It is a time for great deeds!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Erinys View Post
                    Darn dang link parser. Add the ) to the end of the URL and it'll work again.

                    Thank you all for the info.
                    2. It seems there isn't agreement about what the Oba ought to be, but mechanically are they the same as Eshu or separate?
                    Their C20 writeup focuses only on after their coronation, no mention of them being identical to the Eshu beforehand, so they get the Mantle of the Orishas Birthright (the Arcadian sidhe's Awe and Beauty/Unearthly Beauty), the Tale Craft Birthright (same as the Eshu), and the Native Soil Frailty (unique to them).


                    Scion 2E: What We Know - A wiki compiling info on second edition Scion.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Eldagusto View Post
                      You aren't going to get a uniform term that applies to them all so Orisha is just as suitable a name as any other. Nunnehi after all covers at least one whole continent, in 1st ed they talked about them also including South America.

                      Its the main reason Spirit Beings was chosen for the Australian ' kiths', the Nunnehi one really needs changing as well but its a bit late for that. But I tend to go with folklore over gamelore with my CtD chronicles so I'm probably not the general audience.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Damian May View Post


                        Its the main reason Spirit Beings was chosen for the Australian ' kiths', the Nunnehi one really needs changing as well but its a bit late for that. But I tend to go with folklore over gamelore with my CtD chronicles so I'm probably not the general audience.
                        I’d rather have Nunnehi as the name the. Give them a super generic and unflavored name like Spirit beings though. Same with calling it Medicine even if it’s not universal a concept. I liked the idea of secret truths of the world that leaks into different cultures.


                        It is a time for great deeds!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Eldagusto View Post

                          I’d rather have Nunnehi as the name the. Give them a super generic and unflavored name like Spirit beings though. Same with calling it Medicine even if it’s not universal a concept. I liked the idea of secret truths of the world that leaks into different cultures.
                          Understood. Its just alien to the way I play to put game jargon overwriting culture as I would see it drive the other direction. But we all do things differently I guess.

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                          • #14
                            With how recently (relatively) the Bantu cultures spread out in Africa, there may be a concept that's widespread among those cultures, or at least a word widespread among them. If we assume that a name originated in one ancient human language, such as Proto-[Bantu] and then spread out over the centuries, each linguistic descendant of that word could be in use by changelings, even if it retains no meaning for any humans. This is my current approach to Swahili and southern African names for Changing-Breeds and Bastet tribes. The words they borrow from human languages aren't 20th-century translations, they're ancient words invented millennia ago and evolved along with the languages.

                            With Nunnehi, I wouldn't necessarily replace the name, but rather add a dozen additional names used by different families. That's just my approach, though.


                            I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
                            Exalted and cWoD book list. Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors.

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                            • #15
                              That’s my approach add regional variants rather then replace the names. The basic rub of the names meaning, the people who live everywhere is solid and evocative, if you don’t want to use Nunnehi then just auto translate that to English or whatever language.

                              As for Fera words technically they are supposed to be prehistoric Fera language words that humans had incepted into their language. Except for terms like Homid which are modern.

                              But if Fae are real and they are ancient then I don’t see why they would need to follow the exact language and cultural rules of each regions humans, instead I treat them as a shadow culture of their own, hence why the term Medicine and Nunnehi are recognized by them even if they spread to foreign lands, it’s a truth of the world and metaphysics they recognize.


                              It is a time for great deeds!

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