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Am I the only one who wished M20 had more metaplot?

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  • #46
    It might be. They might reserve the Metaplot advancement for M5, which I do expect will be more along the lines of Brucato's “Mage: the New Millennium” (restructuring the Council of Nine and renaming many of the Traditions; reorganizing the Union and instituting a Purge; and bringing the Disparate Alliance or of the shadows). But at the least, I expect that the outlines for New Millennium plot advancements will be included in the book.


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    • #47
      I don't like the Purge as a concept - it seems designed to try and reset the clock to 1e when it was white hats vs black hats. Now using an attempted purge of idealists/reformers (by technephandi/Threat Null/Technocrat hardliners) to trigger a Technocratic Civil War in the style of the second scenario in Ascension ... that's a more interesting concept.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by Czernobog View Post
        I don't like the Purge as a concept - it seems designed to try and reset the clock to 1e when it was white hats vs black hats. Now using an attempted purge of idealists/reformers (by technephandi/Threat Null/Technocrat hardliners) to trigger a Technocratic Civil War in the style of the second scenario in Ascension ... that's a more interesting concept.

        *Looks at V5 in comparison to v1*

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        • #49
          Originally posted by Lian View Post
          *Looks at V5 in comparison to v1*
          That is an interesting, and astute, observation.

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          • #50
            Originally posted by Czernobog View Post
            I don't like the Purge as a concept - it seems designed to try and reset the clock to 1e when it was white hats vs black hats. Now using an attempted purge of idealists/reformers (by technephandi/Threat Null/Technocrat hardliners) to trigger a Technocratic Civil War in the style of the second scenario in Ascension ... that's a more interesting concept.
            I do think that the upcoming “purge” is actually going to end up as a Technocratic Civil War of sorts: it appears that Navalon will be the idealists/reformers that survive the purge. They'll still be Technocrats; but aside from some moles in the Union, they'll no longer be part of the Union. My own wishful thinking is that they'll retain enough power and influence that you can play them like the Technocracy of the Revised Convention Books (the so-called “kinder and gentler” Technocracy that isn't beholden to Control) while leaving the Reloaded Technocracy more ruthless and under Control's thumb than ever before.

            As for Threat Null: my personal take on it is that Threat Null, not the Nephandi, is behind the infiltration of the Union and will instigate the purge; it's in keeping with the nature of the Schism being between out-of-touch management who dwell on the elegance of their models on the one hand, and the down-to-Earth field agents who have to witness first-hand what happens when they attempt to put those models into practice. As well, I prefer the Union's problems be homegrown, not the result of outside manipulation. As long as the Metaplot is such that it allows for this possibility, I'll be happy.


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            • #51
              Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
              As for Threat Null: my personal take on it is that Threat Null, not the Nephandi, is behind the infiltration of the Union and will instigate the purge; it's in keeping with the nature of the Schism being between out-of-touch management who dwell on the elegance of their models on the one hand, and the down-to-Earth field agents who have to witness first-hand what happens when they attempt to put those models into practice. As well, I prefer the Union's problems be homegrown, not the result of outside manipulation. As long as the Metaplot is such that it allows for this possibility, I'll be happy.
              Indeed, there's nothing wrong with Nephandi being more prevalent than before, but Threat Null it's too good an antagonist to loose.

              1ed Mage focused on the protags being the "balance" between the Triad of Dynamism(Marauders), Entropy(Nephandi), and Stasis(the Technocracy). But the Technocracy become more humane to be playable and gathered a huge number of fans (and, really, the hippism of "standard technology is Banal" doesn't hold out for an adult 21th century audience), and thus the inhumane Threat Null becomes a much more fitting antagonist to take the seat of Statism.

              Threat Null being in charge of part of a Pogrom-friendly Technocracy can easily mirror the fear of AI taking control of the world (with the Autochtonians, who probably serve the Computer), while also keeping the dilema of Security vs Freedom (supernaturals ARE dangerous) and the critique against excesive state-surveilance (That, in my opinion, it's still current. Think Assange case, or the more recent Facebook scandal).

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              • #52
                Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
                I do think that the upcoming “purge” is actually going to end up as a Technocratic Civil War of sorts: it appears that Navalon will be the idealists/reformers that survive the purge. They'll still be Technocrats; but aside from some moles in the Union, they'll no longer be part of the Union. My own wishful thinking is that they'll retain enough power and influence that you can play them like the Technocracy of the Revised Convention Books (the so-called “kinder and gentler” Technocracy that isn't beholden to Control) while leaving the Reloaded Technocracy more ruthless and under Control's thumb than ever before.
                Far better and more sensible than having them join the Disparate Alliance. They'd essentially be fighting to save the Union from itself ... which is far thematically richer for a Technocracy chronicle than Technos vs. Trads.

                EDIT:

                How I would set up the factions in M5:

                THE TRADITIONS
                -Seek to keep magic and mysticism alive in the modern world, generally fine with modern society and technology.
                -Order of Hermes,
                -Euthanatos/Chakravanti
                -Solificati/Children of Knowledge
                -Ahl-i-Batin
                -Verbena
                -Dreamspeakers/Kha'vadi
                -Celestial Chorus
                -Akashayana
                -CoX/Sahajiya

                THE NEW ORDER OF REASON
                -Seek to purge the corrupted leaders of the Technocracy to establish a safe, stable reality and lead mankind into a technological utopia.
                -IBM (International Brotherhood of Mechanicians), ItX as presented in Revised
                -Virtual Adepts
                -Society of Ether (Highly tense with the others apart from the Adepts, it's unclear if they'll stick on after Threat Null is dealt with)
                -Revised Syndicate
                -Revised Progenitors (One of the smallest conventions of the NOR, large numbers stayed with the Technocracy)
                -Lightkeepers (Revised NWO, also rather small)
                -Void Engineers

                TECHNOCRATIC UNION
                -Corrupted by Threat Null, the leadership have become as ruthless and totalitarian as they were back in the early 90s. These co-opted elements must be taken down before they break down the Gauntlet and allow Threat Null to openly invade Earth ...

                ROGUE COUNCIL
                -Fanatical traditionalists led by spiritised Tradition archmasters in the Umbra. The strawman version of the Traditions, these are radicals who reject the New Horizon Council and want to bring modern civilisation down so they can party like it's 1399.

                NEPHANDI AND MARAUDERS
                -You know the drill.
                Last edited by Czernobog; 12-06-2018, 03:29 PM.

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                • #53
                  1. I'd have the Dreamspeakers switch their name to the Kha'vadi; and it's a given that the other New Council renamings (Akashic Brotherhood to Akashayana, Cult of Ecstasy to Sahajiya, Euthanatos to Chakravanti, Sons of Ether to Society of Ether, even Virtual Adepts to Mercurial Elite) would take effect.

                  2. With those last two, I'd keep them on the New Council, especially the Society of Ether. But they'd be the most friendly toward the new Order of Reason, and many of these two Traditions might “defect” to the Order. There wouldn't be enough of them to form new Conventions; most of the VA “defectors” would land in the IBM, and the former Etherites would end up all over the place (with the more kooky ones forming a new Special Projects Division within the Syndicate that has nothing to do with Pentex or the Wyrm and everything to do with Fringe).

                  3. Threat Null would indeed be behind the “reformation” of the Union. But they wouldn't be preparing for an invasion of the Earth; their takeover of the Union would be their “invasion”.

                  4. A new kind of Marauder, the Negation Men (first introduced in Book of Secrets) would arise, embodying Denial in the same way that more traditional Marauders embody Madness. Unlike how they're presented in Book of Secrets, they don't reject all magick, per se; each has his own Focus, just like any other mage, and stuff that would be Coincidental in a Reality Zone dominated by his Focus works fine for him. This makes it even harder to identify them than depicted in Book of Secrets; and they're frequently found within other factions, with the single largest infestation being within the Technocratic Union: use Technocratic Negation Men to represent those 1e- and 2e-style Technocrats who actually don't believe in mysticism and are all for Stasis — but they've weaponized their Denial.


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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
                    2. With those last two, I'd keep them on the New Council, especially the Society of Ether. But they'd be the most friendly toward the new Order of Reason, and many of these two Traditions might “defect” to the Order. There wouldn't be enough of them to form new Conventions; most of the VA “defectors” would land in the IBM, and the former Etherites would end up all over the place (with the more kooky ones forming a new Special Projects Division within the Syndicate that has nothing to do with Pentex or the Wyrm and everything to do with Fringe).
                    Yes, that might be a better way to play it.

                    3. Threat Null would indeed be behind the “reformation” of the Union. But they wouldn't be preparing for an invasion of the Earth; their takeover of the Union would be their “invasion”.
                    I can view it as the opening stages of the "invasion", with the bulk of them (particularly the Autopolitans and Transhumans) still being held off in the Umbra by Paradox and the Void Engineers. But Agents and Residents would be present on Earth in various amounts, as they can actually survive on Earth for extended periods of time (and pass for human ... somewhat).




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                    • #55
                      As for the Disparate Alliance: I would make them a thing, with their “coming out party” coinciding with the Technocratic split. There exactly the sort of thing the Batini would come up with. But I'd make a point to show that it's not Traditions 2.0: the only thing holding them together is a mutual fear of the Technocracy and distrust of the Traditions. In particular, Is use them to illustrate by counterexample the common ground that unites the Traditions: they are what so many say the Traditions are; and by highlighting how they differ from the Traditions, you can more clearly see what the Traditions are like.

                      Navalon/the new Order of Reason isn't part of the Disparate Alliance; but I can see them being grateful if the Alliance had a hand in the nascent Order of Reason surviving the Technocratic purge.


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                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
                        As for the Disparate Alliance: I would make them a thing, with their “coming out party” coinciding with the Technocratic split. There exactly the sort of thing the Batini would come up with. But I'd make a point to show that it's not Traditions 2.0: the only thing holding them together is a mutual fear of the Technocracy and distrust of the Traditions. In particular, Is use them to illustrate by counterexample the common ground that unites the Traditions: they are what so many say the Traditions are; and by highlighting how they differ from the Traditions, you can more clearly see what the Traditions are like.
                        What do you think of my Rogue Council, BTW? They're intended to demonstrate what the Traditions are not from a different angle (as antagonists to all other factions).

                        Navalon/the new Order of Reason isn't part of the Disparate Alliance; but I can see them being grateful if the Alliance had a hand in the nascent Order of Reason surviving the Technocratic purge.
                        Yes, the NOR would be more tolerant of non-Nephandi/Marauders/Rogue Council mage groups.

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                        • #57
                          Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
                          1. I'd have the Dreamspeakers switch their name to the Kha'vadi; and it's a given that the other New Council renamings (Akashic Brotherhood to Akashayana, Cult of Ecstasy to Sahajiya, Euthanatos to Chakravanti, Sons of Ether to Society of Ether, even Virtual Adepts to Mercurial Elite) would take effect.
                          You can have all these renamings, all but one. ( I do think the Society of the Ether is needed for the obvious reason of making it gender-neutral. And it does sound good. )
                          You can even have the nice sounding, but plain ' Mercurial Elite ' replacing the classic and 90s Virtual Adepts.
                          But do let one remain - let the Cult of Ecstasy keep their current faction name.
                          Last edited by Muad'Dib; 12-09-2018, 06:08 PM.

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