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Changeling and Kinain Populations

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  • Changeling and Kinain Populations

    I was wondering if we had an estimate of Changeling and Kinain populations? Given their relative weakness compared to vampires and werewolves, I think that Changelings could be 1:10,000 of the human population and Kinain could be 1:1,000 of the human population without really creating a world that much different than ours.

  • #2
    Back when Babylon 5 was airing, the show's creator was extremely active on-line and would answer questions from fans. One that has always stuck with me was when a fan asked for specifics about how fast the ships on the show travel. His answer was at the speed of plot. How much time does it take to get from point A to point B? However much time the plot requires to be interesting and dramatic.

    That's the answer I think works best when questions about supernatural creature X populations crop up. How big of a population do you need for your chronicle to be interesting and fun? Does your plot require that changelings be so rare that a Kithain is lucky to meet more than a handful of other Kithain over the course of his life? Then in your chronicle, there's probably not going to more then a few per major urban area with most towns only having one or no changelings. Do you want a game with huge political rivalries and courts vying for territory? Then most cities in your chronicle will probably have enough changelings to fill out all roles in a couple of local courts and enough commoners to act as support and opposition for both. This might even make some small towns have as many changelings as humans, but as long as everyone at the table is willing to roll with it and having fun, I'd say go for it.


    Charlie Cantrell
    Onyx Path Freelancer
    Changeling: The Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition, Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes, Book of Freeholds

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    • #3
      So while I agree with the answer above, I also like assigning population numbers to get a general idea of a setting composition when I run games.

      I usually use 1 Changeling for every 20,000 humans and 1 Kinain for every 20 Changelings.
      This makes Changelings the second most populous Supernatural (after Wraiths) with all other splats assuming their on the brink of extinction (if not outright extinct) due to the Mists.

      And for the notion that Changelings are "weaker" than the other splats. I will assume you haven't actually played Changeling characters. In a number of games (at least 2) I've seen Changeling characters go one on one with Vampires, Gurahl, Garou and Mages. Changelings are terribly underestimated I find.


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      • #4
        Why would Kinain be less common than Changelings? It says in Enchanted, p. 13, that 80% of the children born to the mating of a Changeling with a mortal are Kinain (20% are Changelings) and that 50% of the children born to the mating of two Changelings are Kinain (50% are changelings), which would suggest that Kinain are at least three times as common as changelings. Add in the fact that the Faerie Blood can last for multiple generations, that the children and grandchildren of Kinain can be born Kinain, and I could easily see that the actually number of Kinain would be tenfold the number of Changelings.

        I have actually played Changeling, and they tend to fall apart fairly quickly because of Banality. That is especially true when they face Sorcerers, as Counterspells can easily shred cantrips, leaving the Changeling with nothing to show of their efforts (Mana is much easier to recover than Glamour). Where they excel is in the Dreaming, a Realm that few other creatures can enter, a Realm where the majority of changelings should probably dwell when they are not in the mortal world trying to breed more changelings.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Aya Tari View Post
          Why would Kinain be less common than Changelings? It says in Enchanted, p. 13, that 80% of the children born to the mating of a Changeling with a mortal are Kinain (20% are Changelings) and that 50% of the children born to the mating of two Changelings are Kinain (50% are changelings), which would suggest that Kinain are at least three times as common as changelings. Add in the fact that the Faerie Blood can last for multiple generations, that the children and grandchildren of Kinain can be born Kinain, and I could easily see that the actually number of Kinain would be tenfold the number of Changelings.
          The majority of Changelings are going to be Childlings which shouldn't be having any children. The Changelings most likely to have children are Grumps, who number the fewest. That skews the numbers a lot.
          Mind you, there aren't any hard numbers anywhere so this is entirely made up. If you want a quarter of the population to have fae blood, that's fine. I also tend to see Fae-Blooded (enough to qualify for the merit) having to be within a generation (possibly 2 if needed for story reasons)


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          • #6
            Originally posted by idpersona View Post
            So while I agree with the answer above, I also like assigning population numbers to get a general idea of a setting composition when I run games.

            I usually use 1 Changeling for every 20,000 humans and 1 Kinain for every 20 Changelings.
            This makes Changelings the second most populous Supernatural (after Wraiths) with all other splats assuming their on the brink of extinction (if not outright extinct) due to the Mists.

            And for the notion that Changelings are "weaker" than the other splats. I will assume you haven't actually played Changeling characters. In a number of games (at least 2) I've seen Changeling characters go one on one with Vampires, Gurahl, Garou and Mages. Changelings are terribly underestimated I find.
            I think the 1:20,000 number has been stated elsewhere (Changeling ST's Guide, perhaps?), but I'd venture the number of kinain is higher. At least three times higher.

            Depending on your particular game, even dormant changelings, who have become Undone, can still spawn kinain (they still have a faerie soul - it's just asleep).

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            • #7
              Strange, the majority of my Changeling games have revolved around Grumps, rather than Childlings or Wilders, because Childings grow up to be Wilders and Wilders grow up to be Grumps. The majority of the people who I played with also did not want to be treated like an inferior when they dealt with mortals and, even more important, Childlings begin with a Willpower 1 and Wilders begin with a Willpower 2, which makes both of them highly vulnerable to the effects of the powers of other supernatural creatures (Grumps start with Willpower 5). My players just reduced the difficulty of their Cantrips by using bunks, which made everything really, really fun to watch, and avoided temporary Banality by accepting Nightmare dice. I do not think that my players ever used Glamour to reduce the difficulty of their Cantrips.

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              • #8
                Well, maybe kinian are much more populated then Changelings. However, how much of them actually knows they are kinian? I am pretty sure that much less than Changelings.

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                • #9
                  I imagine that the children of Changelings know, but those with weaker blood likely do not.

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                  • #10
                    I imagine Changelings are the most common supernatural after wraiths because of well two things, first changelings have the most intricate base social structure there's a High King Of concordia, who has a parlament, and then there are multiple kings through out North america, who each have multiple Dukes who each have multiple Counts who each have multiple Barons all the way down to whole knightly orders. Meanwhile other groups generally have International and local with little in between, for Vampires its.. Prince then Justicar then Inner circle there's no "Super prince/king/Emperor" figure who might over see mutiple domains at once.

                    Secondly you have descriptions in the Changeling Metaplot of a bunch of battles and these are at least hitting decent level SCA event numbers which even Sabbat Seiges or Hive raids don't seem to hit.

                    And since changelings generally don't have to do much to cover things up they don't have to actively protect the Veil or Masquerade they can have a hidden large secodnary society.

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                    • #11
                      I agree. The Mists protect them from mortals and, for the most part, they can retreat to the Near Dreaming if they need to do anything big.

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                      • #12
                        In short, changelings rock.

                        Now gimme C20 already! :P

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                        • #13
                          I am curious, how common are Childlings and Wilders in Changling games? Does their low Willpower matter much?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Aya Tari View Post
                            I am curious, how common are Childlings and Wilders in Changling games? Does their low Willpower matter much?
                            I'm assuming the question is how often do people play Childlings and Wilders?
                            About 25/75 for my games. I haven't had a player play a Grump yet. Having high willpower isn't super important. It's a stat like any other and I haven't had players feel the need to min/max their characters. Just going from memory, I think my player's wilder characters started with between 3 and 7.

                            Also, it's a Changeling game after all. There aren't really any powers that target Willpower like in Vampire so the players are pressured less to have it.


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                            • #15
                              Ah, you do not play crossover games then, I understand.

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