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  • Changing vampires into lawn furniture

    So this was just posted on Facebook:

    The Notorious Vampiric Lawn-Chair (••••• Life/ ••••• Matter)
    A feat more spoken of than actually performed (if only because so few mages have Mastered both Life and Matter well enough to enact such radical transformations of both), this legendary spell transforms a dreaded undead entity into domestic furnishings. Variations include soap-bubbles, trees, household pets, and – in one infamous urban legend – a bag of flaming poo. Despite such rumors, though, the realities involved in this sort of metamorphosis make the idea more theoretical than practical.
    According to rumors, both Caeron Mustai and his arch-rival Porthos Fitz-Empress had several pieces of Kindred kindling in their studies, although this seems unlikely, given the risk of said furniture turning back into vampires at inopportune times. Certain vampires have claimed – rightly or wrongly – that mages turned them into chairs and other inanimate objects… typically using that claim to justify the nightmarish fates they inflicted upon those mages afterward. It was speculated that the Massasa Wars were sparked by such disgraceful transformations… and in at least one verified case, that speculation is true. The vengeance worked upon the Hermetic Master in question – who dared to turn a flesh-crafting Tzimisce into a commode – remains an object-lesson for mages with more skill than sense. According to all accounts, he’ll be screaming for a long, long time…
    ___________________
    By popular demand, yes, this rote is in Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition.
    The Systems, section - which I am not posting here (you'll have to see it when the book comes out) - points out all the things that make this an EXTREMELY difficult spell to cast successfully, along with the hideous results of doing so UNsuccessfully.
    Enjoy!
    Of course it's included as a joke, but i thought I'd go ahead and comment anyway.

    Sphere-wise, I don't think it should be this difficult. The Life Requirement is just about right - for ease of use, treating Vampires as Life Patterns seems to be a step in the right direction.The MAtter requirement seems off though. 5? Really? We aren't turning a vampire into anti-matter or neutronium. It's a lawn chair. Now if it's a folding type that's pictured on the Facebook post, that might be Matter 4, as that would require moving parts. If it's a simple plastic chair though, that shouldn't require more than Matter 2.

    The bigger question of course is what paradigm allows for turning vampires into furniture, and the answer is likely none. Turn them into stone, turn them into a pillar of salt, turn them into a frog, maybe...no chairs.

    Personally I think for transformation magic, the target should get the benefit of lethal soak. HERO system points out that transforming someone is roughly analogous to killing them...a vampire turned into an earthworm is just as little a threat as one turned to ash.

    Finally, vampires have a natural tendency to revert back to there prior state every evening, so i think any such effect would have to include some sort of Time, Entropy, or similar effect to suppress that. Otherwise your lawn furniture rises as dusk as the blood-drinking undead, and that is just really inconvenient.

  • #2
    Oh god I hope this doesn't represent system crunch in the M20... this shouldn't require Life 5...

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    • #3
      It's meant to be a long term, total change, so I think that Life 5 after consulting my previous editions. Life 3 is Heal/Harm complex patterns (including humans and humanoids), Life 4 is alter (boost/nerf/tweak stats, change features, add some new capabilities) while Life 5 is needed for a complete transformation. Turning yourself into a lawn chair would be different, but I'm not sure why you might want to do that right off hand.

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      • #4
        Why not? Life 5 (digging out my hardcover) is "Transform Complex Patterns/Create Complex Patterns/Perfect Metamorphosis". It specifically defines transformations right there into other life forms.

        The better argument is that it should not require Matter 5, but rather Matter 4 "Complex Transmutation" which specifically lists transmuting living matter into non-living matter (pumpkin into gilded coach). One might argue whether vampires are living I suppose, but probably close enough considering one can make empty husks with Life 5.

        One might also note that the blood sucking lawnchair still has a mind - life nor matter actually get rid of that, so he might be pretty angry if he can still impact you psychically

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Raleel View Post
          One might also note that the blood sucking lawnchair still has a mind - life nor matter actually get rid of that, so he might be pretty angry if he can still impact you psychically
          This is something to consider.

          Auspex powers that rely on senses will likely not work, as the chair has no senses, but a vampire could theoretically astrally project out of such a form. Dominate requires eye contact, so that wouldn't likely work. Presence requires seeing the vampire's face, so that won't work, although a Summoning might. Obfuscate might still work. Thaumaturgy paths might still work, and possibly Necromancy paths in the same vein. Dementation should work, because being turned into a chair shouldn't really inconvenience a Malkavian. Celerity, Potence, Protean, most uses of Quietus and Serpentis are right out. Chimerstry I believe requires the vampire to be able to sense his own illusion, thus wouldn't work, which is a pity. Obtenebration probably still works. Vicissitude might still work depending on the ST interpretation of Vicissitude, and how well the tone of the game can survive a vampiric chair sealing someone's asshole shut. Whether Fortitude works is up in the air.

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          • #6
            Except vampires require both Life and Matter to affect at all. So radical transformation of Kindred requires the highest relevant rating in both Spheres. It's specifically for vampires. A human turned into a lawn chair would most likely be Life 5/Matter 4, as Raleel notes.

            EDIT: Gods, I am such a Mage geek.
            Last edited by Captain Aeon; 03-24-2014, 11:07 PM. Reason: Commentary on self :)


            Heroes die. Hope is a phoenix.

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            • #7
              True, true. Perhaps the ruling on Matter 5 is that vampires count as exotic enough matter for the purposes of effects, although having to have Matter 5 to affect vampires at all seems a bit like overkill.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Wolfgar View Post
                True, true. Perhaps the ruling on Matter 5 is that vampires count as exotic enough matter for the purposes of effects, although having to have Matter 5 to affect vampires at all seems a bit like overkill.
                I'm pretty sure you don't need Matter 5 to affect vampires at all -- just for something as exotic as the legendary/infamous Lawn Chair rote.

                Besides, all you need to ward off Kindred is Forces 2. To quote the gorram Batman: "Make no mistake, I have a $70,000 sliver of a radioactive meteor to stop the one from Metropolis. All I need for you is a penny for a book of matches."


                Heroes die. Hope is a phoenix.

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                • #9
                  ... Wow. That's a whole lot of words devoted to a pretty weak joke. I especially like how it calls out the two most powerful Hermetic Mages in the setting by name, because nowhere near enough page space has been already dedicated across prior editions to robbing the Order of any lingering dignity or grandeur.


                  Please add signature.

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                  • #10
                    The Hermetics are badly in need of some love in this point actually, since they have been shit on pretty consistently from Day 1.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Captain Aeon View Post
                      I'm pretty sure you don't need Matter 5 to affect vampires at all -- just for something as exotic as the legendary/infamous Lawn Chair rote.
                      Well, to affect with Life anyway. I may want to heal my vampiric buddy at some point too.

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                      • #12
                        I was curious how this rote compared to the "Remove the curse of God from a vampire" Rote, and it actually uses more matter and life. Curing Vampirism is Entropy 4, Life 4, Matter 4, Prime 6. I guess in a way it kind of makes sense, where curing Vampirism is removing a curse, physically changing a vampire into a piece of furniture is obscenely drastically altering it.


                        Exalted Behind a Screen of Jade, Savant of the Immaculate Texts, No Moon Scholar, Good Sitting Dog, Best Lurking Cat with Bones, Pioneer Pooch, Corsair, Director, Keeper of the Karstein Manor, Scion with Shield of Knowledge, Erymanthian Boar, Seeking Awakened, Cloaked Changeling, Family Head, Kindred, Agent, Poltergeist, Disciple of the Antler Crown, Wraith, Conspiracy Theorist, First Time Traveler

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SamuraiMujuru View Post
                          I was curious how this rote compared to the "Remove the curse of God from a vampire" Rote, and it actually uses more matter and life. Curing Vampirism is Entropy 4, Life 4, Matter 4, Prime 6. I guess in a way it kind of makes sense, where curing Vampirism is removing a curse, physically changing a vampire into a piece of furniture is obscenely drastically altering it.
                          Prime 6... I think involving arch-Spheres is their way of saying, "we don't want players doing this." I guess it makes sense. With Prime 5 you can imbue a creature with Sphere effects like a living Talisman, but it makes sense that messing with Static Magic would be correspondingly harder. But then I'm skeptical of Arch Spheres in general. I say, make really outlandish Effects (backward time travel, etc) the special projects of Masters, that they will probably spend years trying to achieve--but that are still Sphere 5 Effects.

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                          • #14
                            Now instead of a lawn chair, what if i turn a vampire into a stone seat... and what if that vampire is a malkavian... and what if i left that seat right at the table council next to the 9 other sphere seats... Oh wait !

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                            • #15

                              Yeah, it should be Life 5/Matter 4 imho, but it wouldn't be a Mage rote without weird Sphere requirements . Loved the reference to the Tzimisce - mainly because a Tzimisce PC turned a garou into a chair in my DA game using Viccissitude. Turn about is fair play, heh heh...

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