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The collected Fiction Inspirations for Mage: The Ascension

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  • #16
    The men who stare at goats


    Are you on the square?
    Are you on the level?

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Crowley View Post
      Jojo Bizarre Adventures (?)
      I was thinking that too. Phantom Blood alone would provide an interesting take on the Akashyana, in addition to being good for a Victorian Age game. And there's a lot of material for magical Effects. Plus, each Part of Jojo represents a different genre, so it could lend itself to many different kinds of Mage games. As above with Victorian Age gothic horror, Indiana Jones-style pulp adventure, cross-continent journeys, small town mysteries, mafia drama, prison isolation, etc.

      Come to think of it, Mages stuck in a prison sounds like a unique campaign challenge. Have the cabal members thrown into prison (or even Awaken there), contrive some reason why they can't use their magick to just escape, and make them both survive the confinement and accomplish some goal only possible on the inside. Pit them against rival inmates (both mundane and magical), the prison guards and administration, ghosts of dead prisoners, nasty spirits that flock to the negative emotions of the place, the crushing knowledge of always being watched, and whatever other threats the Storyteller throws in to mix things up.


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      • #18
        Planescape Torment - set in Dungeons & Dragons' Planescape setting, this RPG game is known for it's depth. Most often a non-combat approach can be chosen to progressing; the game can be played more like an adventure game rather than an RPG. (simply put all your stat points into wisdom, charisma and intelligence)
        It goes heavily into themes of belief and will changing and shaping reality. In addition to that, the personal relations between the player character and his companions serve to provide alternative points of view, and are very interesting in themselves. The locations traveled and problems encountered are possibly extremely inspiring for a Mage game, especially if one involves the Umbra, spirits, and Paradox Realms.

        Sacrifice - a very non-standard RTS game, it presents a beautifully conceived fantasy world with it's own deity politics and schemes. Due to having to choose - with every mission - as to which god to serve, the events and plot progress in very different, but also disturbingly similar pathways.
        ( It can be very hard to grasp and succeed at first, but if anyone needs, I offer advice in regards to completing the missions. )

        The Dune book series by Frank Herbert - worth reading by Mage players for two reasons: it's presentation of the concept of divination and steering destiny; and the way Bene Gesserit (and others) manipulate people in a way comparable to the NWO and Technocracy.

        Originally posted by Bluecho View Post
        Come to think of it, Mages stuck in a prison sounds like a unique campaign challenge. Have the cabal members thrown into prison (or even Awaken there), contrive some reason why they can't use their magick to just escape,
        Another Mage(s) could have simply warded and/or cursed (or gaes'ed) them against escaping. Teleporation obviously doesn't work. Mind effects with the intent of escaping prison fail or botch. Invisibility fails at just the wrong series of moments. etc. Scrying and divination work only as far as observing the habits of other prisoners.
        I can actually see Technocracy doing this to serious offenders. A few days after they Awaken, they end up in a hastily created Room 101 in the prison, where they are implanted the phrase/idea of "You can't escape. Not until you are released.". that makes their Magick fail when they disobey the NWO conditioning.

        Other Mage(s) can also do something similar, except they could do it from a distance perhaps. The questions remains - what are the conditions of release - is it proving their moral values somehow?.. Or maybe establishing themselves as rulers of the prison, and make it collapse in a full-blown riot?
        Last edited by Muad'Dib; 05-24-2016, 06:22 AM.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Muad'Dib View Post
          Another Mage(s) could have simply warded and/or cursed (or gaes'ed) them against escaping. Teleporation obviously doesn't work. Mind Effects with the intent of escaping prison fail or botch. Invisibility fails at just the wrong series of moments. etc.
          I can actually see Technocracy doing this to serious offenders. A few days after they Awaken, they end up in a hastily created Room 101 in the prison, where they are implanted the phrase/idea of "You can't escape. Not until you are released.". that makes their Magick fail when they disobey the NWO conditioning.
          Other Mage(s) can also do something similar, except they could do it at a distance perhaps. The questions remains - what are the conditions of release - is it proving their moral values somehow?.. Or maybe establishing themselves as rulers of the prison, and make it collapse in a full-blown riot?
          Alternatively, the Mages stay there because they don't want to leave. Or, at the very least, staying is preferably to trying to leave. It might be that someone (like the prison warden, maybe) warded the place to keep Mages inside. Or it could be that the Cabal came to the prison specifically to accomplish a task they couldn't do from the outside. Hell, the place could still be warded in that case, if it meant keeping Mages out rather than in.

          Like, the cabal needs to talk to some prisoner kept in solitary confinement, who can't be brought out for visitation. So they need to sneak in or get themselves locked up, and then further locked into solitary, close enough to talk to the dude.

          Or, alternatively, the cabal doesn't know exactly what they're looking for, save that somewhere in the prison could be clues to a mystery they need solving. So they need to be there to gather clues, and the guards are too well monitored (at least when being hired) to sneak someone in that way. And of course, any Mage strong enough to stop other Mages from scrying the place or sending spirits to look for clues is going to have plenty of other tricks up their sleeve. If, for instance, the prison is a front for a Progenitor lab, they might have some horrifying monsters, born of science, that they can set loose. Maybe a few NWO agents masquerading as guards, taking troublesome inmates to a special holding cell for "enhanced rehabilitation" experiments.


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          • #20
            The Supernatural episode Folsom Prison Blues did that story quite well.

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            • #21
              The Pop Culture and Philosophy series. Not only does it provide some good discussions on various important topics for Mage (ethics, metaphysics, paradigms), it also uses many of the other materials already mentioned as the basis for the discussion (The Matrix, Buffy, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Star Wars, Chronicles of Narnia, Wizard of Oz, Doctor Who, just to name a few).
              Last edited by Papa Bear; 05-26-2016, 12:09 PM.


              - If you must be ridiculous, I must ridicule you.
              - Those that can give up essential liberties in exchange for temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. -- Benjamin Franklin

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              • #22
                Great post! Whenever I think of Mage, I always think of Dark City. I was glad to see it was the first movie on the list. I would love to see people's top three picks for the most quintessential media on Mage. I would have to say Dark City, The Fisher King, and The Fountain.

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                • #23
                  The Crow
                  Wanted (The Movie. think it as Euthanathos the movie)
                  The Holy Mountain and El Topo by Jodorowski
                  24 Hour Party People (Cult of Ectasy and the born of a Chantry)
                  Stephen's King Storm of the Century / Eyes of the Dragon / The Hearts of Atlantis and The Stand. Pretty much any story related with Randall Flagg is a good example of Descent, and Heart's of Atlantis is the story of a mage running away form some Paradox manifestation or something similar. Also; Duma Key, The Shining, Revival and Doctor Sleep
                  V For Vendetta
                  The Witch (2016)
                  Lords of Salem
                  Corto Maltese (Corto Maltes) its an INCREDIBLY GOOD EXAMPLE of A Hollow One, he is a Sailor from the First World War, a Poet warrior who travels the world

                  The Big Books Of: its a series of comic books talking about different subjects such as Urban Legends, Death, Bad or Evil people and organizations. Scandals, Hoaxes and Martyrs among others.

                  GOOD OMENS By Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

                  Fight Club
                  The Girl with the Dragon Tatto (Both the movie and the Millenium books)
                  The Heavy Metal Magazine has some interesting stuff for mage
                  Tales from The Crypt/Vault of Horror, Any horror comicbook from the 60's mainly

                  The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Archie Comics)
                  Judge Dredd (The Comics)
                  Preacher By Garth Ennis
                  Akira by Katsuhiro Otomo
                  The Adventures of Tintin
                  The Matrix Comics

                  The Blair Witch Project Comics (The ones with Guy Davies) as well as the mythos related stuff (Rusty Parr and such)
                  Lord of Illusions
                  Books of Blood


                  Videogames:
                  Half-Life (the entire series, including portal)
                  I have no mouth and i must scream
                  Clive Barker's Jericho
                  Minecraft (im sorry, im so sorry)
                  Diablo
                  Eternal Darkness
                  Deus Ex
                  Alan Wake
                  Amnesia
                  Max Payne
                  The Bureau XCOM Classified
                  Condemned: Criminal Intent
                  Deadly Premonition
                  Eldtrich
                  Euclidean
                  Evil Genious
                  Far Cry 3 (Shambala)
                  Fractured Space
                  FTL: Faster than light
                  Guns of Icarus
                  Hotline Miami 1 & 2
                  Killer7
                  The Killer is Dead
                  No More Heroes
                  Lucious
                  PSYCHONAUTS
                  Brutal legend
                  Saints Row (From 2 Onwards)
                  Shadow Warrior
                  System Shock
                  Last edited by Crowley; 05-29-2016, 03:00 PM.


                  Forum's Official's Joker and Trickster. Pardon my bad english, aint my first language (I Speak Spanish).
                  ST: DtF, HtR, WtO, MtA
                  Signature Chars: Crowley (hakalu), Joe The Nuwisha (WtA)
                  Changelings: be afraid of the Technocracian High Five of Doom

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Crowley View Post
                    /snip
                    Whoa.
                    This will take a while, since there are some doubles here...



                    What doesn't kill you, makes you... stranger.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Crowley View Post
                      Minecraft (im sorry, im so sorry)
                      At first, I was like "huh?". But then I really thought about it, and remembered that Minecraft does have mystical elements. Potion making, for one, uses mundane (and not so mundane) ingredients for spectacular effects. And you can't even start making potions without building AN OBSIDIAN GATE TO HELL (or, in Mage terms, probably some hell-like Umbral realm), in order to hunt fire monsters for their rods and dig up netherworld mushrooms. And you build (or rather finish) yet another gate, to go to another, different Umbral realm, whose inhabitants regularly come to the material plane to mess things up.

                      Then you have enchanting weapons and armor using an arcane book and an anvil. That's Craftwork right there, in addition to all the mundane crafting you're doing.

                      This all, by the way, only covers stuff in Vanilla Minecraft. There's no end to inspiration to be had from the innumerable unofficial mods. Thaumcraft, Witchery, The Aether, Blood Magic, Tinker's Construct, Thermal Expansion, Buildcraft, Applied Energistics, Forestry...

                      Originally posted by Crowley View Post
                      Far Cry 3 (Shambala)
                      Also Far Cry 4. Heavy pseudo-Hindu influence, a clash between tradition and modernism, a third world country run by a dictator with his own cult of personality (to the point where said dictator is alleged to have the power to send animals to attack people). Mountain temples, psychedelic drug trips, vision quests to ethereal realms, and the questionable canonicity of the main character being tied genetically to whatever is going on in that other Ubisoft franchise, Assassin's Creed.


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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Bluecho View Post

                        At first, I was like "huh?". But then I really thought about it, and remembered that Minecraft does have mystical elements. Potion making, for one, uses mundane (and not so mundane) ingredients for spectacular effects. And you can't even start making potions without building AN OBSIDIAN GATE TO HELL (or, in Mage terms, probably some hell-like Umbral realm), in order to hunt fire monsters for their rods and dig up netherworld mushrooms. And you build (or rather finish) yet another gate, to go to another, different Umbral realm, whose inhabitants regularly come to the material plane to mess things up.

                        Then you have enchanting weapons and armor using an arcane book and an anvil. That's Craftwork right there, in addition to all the mundane crafting you're doing.

                        This all, by the way, only covers stuff in Vanilla Minecraft. There's no end to inspiration to be had from the innumerable unofficial mods. Thaumcraft, Witchery, The Aether, Blood Magic, Tinker's Construct, Thermal Expansion, Buildcraft, Applied Energistics, Forestry...



                        Also Far Cry 4. Heavy pseudo-Hindu influence, a clash between tradition and modernism, a third world country run by a dictator with his own cult of personality (to the point where said dictator is alleged to have the power to send animals to attack people). Mountain temples, psychedelic drug trips, vision quests to ethereal realms, and the questionable canonicity of the main character being tied genetically to whatever is going on in that other Ubisoft franchise, Assassin's Creed.

                        damn i meant Far Cry 4. but yeah, in 3 theres some esoterical elements that cant be shrugged off x3


                        Also, BIOSHOCK, Bad Mojo.

                        Disney Films:
                        The Princess and the Toad.
                        Atlantis The Lost Empire
                        Fantasia: The Scorer's Apprentice (Paradox everyone?)
                        Brave
                        Mary Poppins (Fae or Marauder anyone?)
                        Tomorrow Land
                        The Hunchback of Notre Dame (?)
                        Recess School's Out (Could be Changeling too)
                        Meet The Robinsons
                        Pirates of the Caribbean



                        Vidocq
                        The Man Who Laughs

                        The Adams Family: WAIT.....think about it a family of Exentric people with weird lives, who lives in an mysterious mannor/museum. They have a graveyard on their backyard. They fiddle with death and suicide brushing it off as nothing. The Father loves his woman to Death and plays around with swords and torture devices. The mother is a mysterious inhuman figure fill with mystique, the kids play with the idea of killing each other. The old woman creating odd potions and spells. The Handyman being a Ghoulish being who speaks like a zombie. Uncle Fester being a creature fill with electrical energy who cant seem to be able to die... Cousin IT and Thing...I call it, they are a Family of mages who dont give a shit about paradox and who are trying to live a normal life in a boring world.
                        Last edited by Crowley; 05-29-2016, 10:14 PM.


                        Forum's Official's Joker and Trickster. Pardon my bad english, aint my first language (I Speak Spanish).
                        ST: DtF, HtR, WtO, MtA
                        Signature Chars: Crowley (hakalu), Joe The Nuwisha (WtA)
                        Changelings: be afraid of the Technocracian High Five of Doom

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                        • #27
                          I agree with Crowley about Tomorrowland. It is such an Society of Ether movie that im amazing it didn't automatically add itself when the lady was first posted.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Crowley View Post
                            Killer7
                            The Killer Is Dead
                            No More Heroes
                            All of Suda51's works could provide inspiration for Mage, to one degree or another.

                            Killer7 has a rich atmosphere of surrealism and bizarre, supernatural happenings, in addition to being grounded (if only slightly) in the staples of underworld hitmen and assassins. When you can figure out what is going on - admittedly, it's difficult - it can be rewarding. Invisible, bio-engineered suicide bombing terrorists are unique, yet within the realm of what Mages could do. Familiar also is the idea of certain specialists being required to fight said terrorists, since only they seem to have the ability to see them. The Killer Seven themselves could be a team of Mage assassins...or the product of one Marauder's split personality. Then again, I've read an interpretation of Killer7's plot that maintained that the Smith Syndicate's leader, Harmon Smith, was actually three people, one of which was an aspect of the Western ideal of God (who, as per the story's overarching theme, was eternally at war with the East's ideal manifestation of God).

                            As I said, there's a lot for a Mage player (or storyteller) to mine from Killer7, assuming they can unpack the labyrinthian plot.

                            (I'm unfamiliar with The Killer Is Dead, so moving on).

                            No More Heroes represents a vision of reality where the Technocracy's hold over the Consensus has loosened, allowing a bunch of SF hardware (and some supernatural elements) to seep in. Beam sabers, dexterous prosthetic limbs, enormous rail cannons, whatever the hell that giant machine with the huge brain was, Cosmonaut ghosts, samurai sword beams, and at least two guys whose only apparent powers are using pistols and being rich (imo, Million Gunman is my vision of what a Syndicate Enforcer is). Just to name a fraction of what's going on in No More Heroes and No More Heroes 2.

                            And, just as the Technocracy feared, when mad science and casual mysticism were allowed to flourish in the Consensus, it results in unilateral, underground, post-modern "wizard wars". In this case, assassins with a lot of personal power, nothing much to do, and no accountability, basically running roughshod over society, and turning the cities into their own personal battlegrounds. It's like if the Technocratic Union fell into disarray, the Etherites could inject more of their stuff into the Consensus (as the public is still quicker to accept super science than magic, though that trickles in too), but to the degree that they couldn't control the proliferation of SF arms. And then you have this asshole named Travis Touchdown, who buys a Beam Saber from some Etherites, and propels the technology to popularity by using it in popular underground death matches.

                            Lollipop Chainsaw is more about Hunters than Mages (though Juliet has enough knowledge of necromancy to bring her boyfriend back as a talking head, so who knows), but it too deals plentifully with supernatural stuff. There's the zombies, of course, and a villain who is basically a pissed-off Hollow One who dabbles in (probably Nephandic) magics. Each of the bosses - undead though they be - could be construed as a different kind of mage (punk rock chaos magick, psychedelic Ecstatic, Norse Valdermain, flamboyant Virtual Adept, transforming bike Etherite...). And then there's the entire farm level, an extended trip that would fuel an Ecstatic character for a while.

                            Shadows of the Damned, meanwhile, is basically about a demon hunter and his Fetish gun, diving into a Hellish Umbral realm and all the horrors they find there. That hell, by the way, having plenty of its own rules of operation: heal by drinking booze, darkness choking the life out of the living, gates needing to be fed gross things, etc. Basically an object lesson on how to craft an Umbral realm to fit a theme.


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                            • #29
                              Psychopass: a police unit who tracks criminals basesd on how fucked up their mind is
                              Monster the anime: A.K.A Marauder the TV Show
                              Madoka: AKA let me drink your tears. i mean....Orphans fightin Umbra Horrors
                              Evangelio: Technocracy not being subtil
                              Akira: Marauder the movie!
                              Scooby Doo and The Witches Ghost ...Yeah, just watch it... Basically, Nephandi the movie


                              Stephen kings Under The Dome, The Dark Tower

                              Comics:
                              Hellboy & BRPD
                              The Marquis by Guy Davies: Celestial Chorus the comic
                              The Mask: Marauder in the form of a Mask
                              The Killing Joke: An incredibly good story for potential marauders.
                              Zatanna: Everyday Magic
                              The League of Extraordinary Gentleman (More specifically part 3: Century)

                              Wild Cards the novela
                              Do androids dream of electrical sheeps?
                              The man in the High Castle
                              The Three stigmas of eldtrich palmer


                              Silent hill
                              Last edited by Crowley; 06-15-2016, 10:52 PM.


                              Forum's Official's Joker and Trickster. Pardon my bad english, aint my first language (I Speak Spanish).
                              ST: DtF, HtR, WtO, MtA
                              Signature Chars: Crowley (hakalu), Joe The Nuwisha (WtA)
                              Changelings: be afraid of the Technocracian High Five of Doom

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                While "the works of Neil Gaiman" and "the works of Alan Moore" have already been mentioned, I'm calling out special attention for Alan Moore's run on Swamp Thing and Neil Gaiman's Books of Magic.

                                Alan Moore was the one who brought John Constantine into the DC universe during his time on Swamp Thing. He helped establish some of the supernatural elements of the DC universe that they are still using today. And Swamp Thing's run thru the universe could be mined for one hell of a Seeking.

                                Neil Gaiman's Books of Magic take a young potential wizard and run him thru the metaphysical basics of the universe they live in. Book 3 is very nearly a trip thru the Umbra (but it's actually their Faerieland). Book 2 has one of the best examples of how dangerous the World of Darkness can get and what should happen when a Master Mage (or any seriously elder/powerful character) walks into a room full of other denizens of the night.


                                - If you must be ridiculous, I must ridicule you.
                                - Those that can give up essential liberties in exchange for temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. -- Benjamin Franklin

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