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Help with Rotes for a Cabal of Antagonists

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  • Help with Rotes for a Cabal of Antagonists

    I’m running a Hunter the Reckoning game that will feature a cabal of mages who definitely think they are more noble than their hubris reveals. It will be a cabal of four mages. Any suggestions on fun, interesting, or just outside the box rotes, talismans, or wonders for them is appreciated.

  • #2
    Knowing what kind of Mages they are would certainly help.

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    • #3
      I haven’t settled on anything definitive. I’m thinking the leader will be from the Celestial Chorus. Probably have a hermetic, euthanatos, and maybe Verbena to round it out

      The cabal has a naive and daunting goal of trying to “defeat” death. They view it as the most critical hurdle to overcome in the path to Ascension, as they believe death likely claims any mage before they can possibly acquire enough knowledge and experience to ascend. They believe that if they can do this they will be able to import their victory as means to reignite and quickly end a second ascension war, this time with the traditions on top.

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      • #4
        Ah. You should take a look at Voormas, as he had the same idea. The only difference is he's an Arch-Mage and has so much Jhor that if you kill him the shit jumps to another person. It's a good time.


        Celestial Chorus: Lots of spirit based rotes. Making allies with spirits (Aspects of the One) that oppose death or promote longevity.

        Hermetic: I see a lot of alchemy-Life inspired rotes here. Using alchemy to extend life is easy, so why not pursue that to the point of being able to destroy death.

        Euthanatos: Lots of Time/Entropy effects related to slowing down or eliminating death by change/control of decay.

        Verbena: Instead of Alchemy, focus on similar stuff to the Hermetic but with more emphasis on ritual and sacrifice. If Mages are the ones who are hurt by the existence of death, sacrifice long living animals to prolong their own.

        These are more broad effects/ideas for what they might focus on as specific rotes are kinda limited to all hell and would take up a lot of space. (Unless just quoting some from out of the book)

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        • #5
          To defeat death one needs to understand it.

          Experiments with undead and the restless dead (necromancy) are typical and could be a way to introduce the Imbued to the antagonists because Hunters often fight these beings.

          Human sacrifices or life-force being forcibly taken "for the cause" (what's a few lives for such a sublime goal) could showcase how monstrous they are. Them also healing sick people and generaly trying not to kill their enemies (death it's an abomination, if we can stop it then we must) could add ambiguity to the mix.

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          • #6
            I wrote these up for one of my Mage characters ages ago, so bear in mind that they're two editions behind. Still, the basic ideas might be useful:

            Only the Good Die Young (••• Entropy, ••• Life) Acts as the Like Clockwork rote on the mage’s own body, resisting the pull of entropy and preventing aging and disease. Although the effect is coincidental, it must be periodically renewed. The usual focus is some kind of vice the mage indulges in; martinis, cigars, and the attentions of beautiful young women are among the favorites.

            Dust Devil (••• Entropy, •• Spirit) This effect summons a mindless Bane spirit to bedevil an opponent. It manifests as a whispering ethereal whirlwind, causing materials carried by the target(s) to crumble into dust (or to corrode and violently malfunction in the case of mechanical devices). This swirl of rotting dust incapacitates the victim(s) with choking and coughing unless they exceed the caster’s successes with a Stamina roll (difficulty 8).The effect lasts for a duration determined by the number of successes unless the Bane is banished by Spirit magick. The Dust Devil is a spirit with Willpower 5, Rage 6, Gnosis 2, and power 20. It possesses the charms Blighted Touch, Break Reality, Control Winds, and Short Out.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Aleph View Post
              To defeat death one needs to understand it.

              Experiments with undead and the restless dead (necromancy) are typical and could be a way to introduce the Imbued to the antagonists because Hunters often fight these beings.

              Human sacrifices or life-force being forcibly taken "for the cause" (what's a few lives for such a sublime goal) could showcase how monstrous they are. Them also healing sick people and generaly trying not to kill their enemies (death it's an abomination, if we can stop it then we must) could add ambiguity to the mix.

              Agreed whole-heartedly. In fact, this will be a defining part of the chronicle, when the cabal kills a damphyr (there is a KoTE main antagonist and this person is his mortal child) for the purposes of a heinous ritual to defeat death.

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              • #8
                and thank you for all the responses!

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                • #9
                  If it's not too late to give suggestions, try having one of the mages be an Etherite, either in the mold of the pulp era Action Scientist, or channeling Herbert West, Reanimator. The latter being a scientist who, like Doctor Frankenstein before him, sought to defeat Death. With Science!

                  An Etherite also helps to maintain a measure of mystery. In a Hunter game, you never quite know what you're up against, until it's staring you in the face. Put the Etherite out front, and it might lead the players to think they're tackling a mostly mundane enemy at first. A mad scientist also has more of the benefit of the Consensus on their side, allowing them to operate their Magick more openly while remaining Coincidental.

                  On the flipside, if the PCs already know they're tangling with mystics, throwing a technomancer at them can be just the curve-ball the plot needs to keep the PCs off balance. Especially if the Etherite has the ability to strike at the PCs from an angle their mystical allies never could.


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