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The beautiful worlds of the Nephandi

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  • The beautiful worlds of the Nephandi

    Forget the Triat for a moment. Forget the Malfeans, and Nyarlathotep or whatever otherworldly horrors some Nephandi worship. Now what you mostly have left of the Nephandi conceptually is deep hatred for current reality. That leaves the question, what would they like the world to be like? Would it be a place where the kind of evil they regularly practice is impossible? Where people, even Sleepers, are more free from the constraints of matter and causation? Is there much common ground in the kind of reality they want, or is the destruction of this reality all they can agree on?

  • #2
    I believe the nephandi practice boils down to the time right after the heat death of the universe, where everything is just a black empty abyss of nothing.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by BurritoMage View Post
      I believe the nephandi practice boils down to the time right after the heat death of the universe, where everything is just a black empty abyss of nothing.
      I understand what Faradn wants. This whole "evil for the evil" just seems... Pointless. We try to seek some sense to it, because we must...

      However, real life psychopaths are simply evil. They lack empathy, and thats all. No utter motives, no higher logic, no nothing. Just barbaric sadism.

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      • #4
        I doubt there's much actual agreement between Nephandi. They've cobbled together a way of working together, or at least making sure their sudden but inevitable betrayals still advance the overall cause, but that doesn't mean there's any unified end goal. I suspect many of them don't even have end goals. After all, it's not the destination but the journey that matters.


        Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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        • #5
          Wasn't there the Hell on Earth scenario in Ascension?


          I seem to have acquired a site for running play by post games. This is unexpected and frightening and come watch either the glorious play or the magnificent train wreck:

          The Malkavian Madness Network

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          • #6
            A world where no one has to suffer because feeling is impossible.


            Keepers of the Wyck: A Chronicle I'm running UPDATE Chapter 23:In The Mind of Madness

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            • #7
              Originally posted by BenjCano View Post
              Wasn't there the Hell on Earth scenario in Ascension?
              I find it so strange that the psychopaths in WoD can find the needed harmony to work toghether, but not the heroes.

              Thats why I always saw scenarios like the "Nephandic Infiltration" of both Union and Trads feels so unreal

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              • #8
                I suggested a while ago the application of negative utilitarianism for use with Nephandi
                The actual term negative utilitarianism was introduced by R.N.Smart as the title to his 1958 reply to Popper[53] in which he argued that the principle would entail seeking the quickest and least painful method of killing the entirety of humanity.
                To end the Tellurian as an act of mery sounds quite nephandiesq to me.


                So, this Zen Master walks up to a hot dog stand and says: "Make me one with everything!"

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                • #9
                  A lot of good comments, guys. I think the Nephandi are very interesting villains, and not the one-dimensional mustache-twirlers some people make them out to be.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Faradn View Post
                    A lot of good comments, guys. I think the Nephandi are very interesting villains, and not the one-dimensional mustache-twirlers some people make them out to be.
                    I'm hoping M20 book of madness doesn't screw them up too badly.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by AgentSmith View Post

                      I find it so strange that the psychopaths in WoD can find the needed harmony to work toghether, but not the heroes.

                      Thats why I always saw scenarios like the "Nephandic Infiltration" of both Union and Trads feels so unreal
                      Not really too unbelievable. Theirs is a society built on the knowledge that nothing is offlimits. This means that only the truly powerful will be in control, as everyone else will either follow them for safety or defy them and be made an example.

                      The nephandi aren't stupid. Unlike the traditions, they only have themselves on their side, and while disharmony is very much their thing, self preservation is still important. You know your superiors are capable of doing anything, unbound by morality, so keeping them happy to avoid getting the brunt end of their wrath is a powerful incentive. You'd only push against them if you were sure you'd win, as losing can mean a great deal more than a tarnished reputation.

                      Harmony forms out of necessity for survival.
                      Last edited by Saikou; 03-10-2017, 08:18 AM.


                      Keepers of the Wyck: A Chronicle I'm running UPDATE Chapter 23:In The Mind of Madness

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                      • #12
                        It makes sense with them being the one faction of mages that serve actual masters rather than just common ideals and their own internal organization. Getting marching orders from Hell, or the Wyrm, probably does wonders for getting the minions to put aside their differences. (Of course, Nephandi that worship the Outsider Lords probably don't benefit from anything resembling cooperation on a scale larger than individual cults, though in general you can count on them all increasing the amount of suffering and madness in the world.)

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Saikou View Post

                          Not really too unbelievable. Theirs is a society built on the knowledge that nothing is offlimits. This means that only the truly powerful will be in control, as everyone else will either follow them for safety or Defoe them and be made an example.

                          The nephandi aren't stupid. Unlike the traditions, they only have themselves on their side, and while disharmony is very much their thing, self preservation is still important. You know your superiors are capable of doing anything, unbound by morality, so keeping them happy to avoid getting the brunt end of their wrath is a powerful incentive. You'd only push against them if you were sure you'd win, as losing can mean a great deal more than a tarnished reputation.

                          Harmony forms out of necessity for survival.
                          And also look at the goals they pursue. Specific factions might have intricate goals (such as 10 year rituals to summon things from beyond) but the Nephandi as a whole have an open ended 'Corrupt or Destroy' goal.

                          Harmony is easier when you don't actually have to work towards your ally's goals.

                          Originally posted by Matt the Bruins fan View Post
                          It makes sense with them being the one faction of mages that serve actual masters rather than just common ideals and their own internal organization. Getting marching orders from Hell, or the Wyrm, probably does wonders for getting the minions to put aside their differences. (Of course, Nephandi that worship the Outsider Lords probably don't benefit from anything resembling cooperation on a scale larger than individual cults, though in general you can count on them all increasing the amount of suffering and madness in the world.)
                          Serve is a strong word. Some Nephandi serve, others enjoy the metaphor of serving, still others are actually manipulating their 'lieges.' No matter what the case, I wouldn't trust their actual loyalty.


                          Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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                          • #14
                            I would think that the avatar inversion of the Cauls would allow the Nephandi's masters to instill pretty unshakeable loyalty, though perhaps some of those who go through it are deluded enough to think that they're still serving their own agenda rather than their masters' afterward.

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                            • #15
                              My long-running Nephandus from many of my Mage games is named Damien Mallory Blake. Damien is a twisted individual, of course, like all Nephandi, but he maintains a respectable veneer of charisma and philanthropy. He has a long-ranging network of contacts and influence that would make some vampires jealous, and he defends his influence with a combination of blackmail, threats, and if necessary, paid-for violence from people who may or may not live to see their paycheck depending on how useful they are.

                              But you ask what he wants. Well, it's quite simple, really.

                              For the world to stay exactly the same craphole it is right this second. For it to remain a place where he can spread his particular brand of misery, where he can do the horrible things he so thoroughly enjoys, and where he has power, influence, and victims for his depraved needs.

                              Damien's paradise looks a lot like the World of Darkness as it is right this very moment. Because, after all, if the world falls apart, he's very well aware that the Dark Masters (and that's precisely how he thinks of them, never in more specific terms than that) won't have much use for his services anymore.

                              He knows he won't live forever. He knows he's hellbound, whatever hell means to him. But he also knows that he's going to take this world for every drop he can along the way, and if he ever does deliver it packaged in a pretty little bow to the Dark Masters, he's going to wait until he can't get anything else out of it, and just hope that that's enough to earn him a better place in whatever's left over when they're done.

                              He knows better, of course. But that's why he doesn't actually want the Descent. He just wants the world to suck enough that he can keep enjoying the hell out of it, pun very much intended.

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