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  • True Brujah Weakness

    Has anyone toyed with alternatives to the Trujah weakness? No, fixing the True Brujah by removing them from the game is not an acceptable answer for the purpose of this thread.

    My issue with the official weakness is that it doesn't make the Trujah emotionless, it makes them bestial and impulsive. If you take a True Brujah and any other vampire with a reasonable Conscience/Conviction rating and have them make the same number of degeneration checks, the Trujah is likely to degenerate faster, and will have a harder time regaining lost Humanity/Path ratings. It seems to me that any True Brujah who are active in the world and don't just have their noses in books all the time should have very low Humanity/Path ratings, simply because of how hard degeneration checks are for them. I doubt that is what was intended, though, because low Humanity/Path vampires are far from emotionless; they're slaves to the urges and impulses of the Beast. The True Brujah brand of emotionlessness is better represented by high ratings in inhuman Paths -- yet they have an exceedingly hard time maintaining high Path ratings because of their weakness.

    It may be that "emotionlessness" is simply not a very good weakness for the purpose of the game. How do you represent lack of emotion in game mechanics? Instead of their official weakness, I considered giving the True Brujah penalties to Social rolls whenever emotions are involved -- but that would make Presence, one of their bloodline Disciplines, basically worthless to them. Moreover, the inability to feel emotions does not necessarily mean that the person is poor at reading and influencing other people. The Trujah are basically psychopaths as defined by pop psychology, and their expertise in manipulating the emotions of others makes a certain amount of sense, even if the Elois themselves are cold and detached.

    How, then, to better define emotionlessness in terms of game mechanics? Or should the True Brujah have a completely different weakness altogether?

  • #2
    Here's the fix. Change their Disciplines to make them a proper foil for the Brujah.

    Temporis (foil of Celerity), Dominate (foil of Presence), Fortitude (foil of Potence).

    Where the Brujah are rash, they are slow. Where the Brujah are passionate, they are commanding. Where the Brujah are strong, they are resilient.

    Where the Brujah rage... they struggle to find an inner spark. By pushing back their emotions and focusing on rejecting the Bastards (btw my headcanon is that Brujah was the word for Bastard in the Original Language, used as an insult by the Ventrue, and the Brujah embraced it in an act of rebellion, but that's obviously not real canon, I just like it). Basically a True Brujah's lack of passion is represented as them struggling to regain Willpower. They don't get it from extreme enjoyment, they don't get it from resting, they only get it from Nature. Since Temporis is a heavy Willpower drain, this feels like a good way to balance things.

    Other possibilities are them being at +2 difficulty to Courage rolls, having repressed the rage of the beast and developed an affinity for the Red Fear. You could call their weakness "Escaping the flames of Carthage"; "The True Brujah know the agony of destruction all too well, and it has been ingrained into their very blood. Carthage burnt, and the Beast of every True Brujah remembers through some dark inheritance. True Brujah are at +2 difficulty to rolls to avoid Rotschrek relating to fire and heat (including sunlight), and cannot spend Willpower to resist Rotschrek or gain automatic successes. They may not take the Face the Flames merit. The True Brujah Methesulahs typically have a Courage rating of 1 or 2, having cowered for eons in their old temples and ruins, shunning the light and the flame. This is why they send forth their (typically Conditioned and Blood Bound) offspring to fulfill tasks for them. This authoritarian treatment has led to 'many' (for any given value of 'many') True Brujah escaping the clutches of their Sires and Grandsires and becoming Independent."
    Last edited by 11twiggins; 02-27-2017, 12:49 PM.

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    • #3
      I've actually toyed with the idea of the same Discipline spread myself, for the reasons you list. Dominate, Fortitude, Temporis would also make the Trujah amusingly close to the Ventrue as far as natural aptitudes were concerned!

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Elphilm View Post
        I've actually toyed with the idea of the same Discipline spread myself, for the reasons you list. Dominate, Fortitude, Temporis would also make the Trujah amusingly close to the Ventrue as far as natural aptitudes were concerned!
        Ilyes canonically murdered and diablerized Ventru, IIRC... so here's some alternative canon.

        Ilyes was Ventru. The Ventrue are descended from Her. Troile was one of Ilyes' Childer, and diablerized her. Her bloodline were the Brujah. The "True Brujah" have Disciplines similar to the Ventrue because they've awoken the aptitudes of their Antedeluvian, even though they are descended from Troile.

        This would partly explain why the Ventrue were so keen to destroy Carthage, along with the Secrecy of the Blood. The Brujah are the bastard cousins of the Ventrue. Of course most who know this are ancients, and the Ventrue find any association too disgusting to discuss while the True Brujah would consider it heresy.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by 11twiggins View Post

          Ilyes canonically murdered and diablerized Ventru, IIRC...
          [citation needed]


          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
            Originally posted by BenjCano View Post

            [citation needed]
            Hence why I say IIRC. Ventru certainly isn't around anymore, and I remember reading that somewhere. Hence IIRC.

            EDIT: The wiki says that one of his "siblings" struck him down when he went looking for Caine. This means one of the other Antedeluvians, presumably one with the same Sire.

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            • #7
              I'm pretty sure Gehenna just says something like, 'Ventrue has been dead since First City'. But without mention of who did so. But take this with a grain of salt since I'm just working off memory here.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by 11twiggins View Post
                Basically a True Brujah's lack of passion is represented as them struggling to regain Willpower. They don't get it from extreme enjoyment, they don't get it from resting, they only get it from Nature. Since Temporis is a heavy Willpower drain, this feels like a good way to balance things.
                Thinking about this, I do like the implications of the proposed weakness. It would encourage Trujah characters to act according to their Natures more strongly than other vampires, reflecting a certain rigidity in thinking and predictableness in behavior that are fitting for the bloodline concept. What do people think, does limited Willpower regain have enough bite as a weakness?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Elphilm View Post
                  Thinking about this, I do like the implications of the proposed weakness. It would encourage Trujah characters to act according to their Natures more strongly than other vampires, reflecting a certain rigidity in thinking and predictableness in behavior that are fitting for the bloodline concept. What do people think, does limited Willpower regain have enough bite as a weakness?
                  Depends on how your ST runs Willpower regeneration. If Willpower is regained every night (RAW rules) then it's a huge weakness... but in a game where each session is a month apart it's not so big a deal. You could have a side-bar saying that if the ST is running Willpower very liberally, the weakness is intensified.

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                  • #10
                    I generally change the penalty so some sort of penalty on social checks. Probably +2 difficulty on empathy and expression. That usually gives people a little bit of pause, as those skills tend to be somewhat important in most vampires day to day. Sure, psychopaths might have an advantage in this usually, the True Brujah are cursed with not having strong emotions, not blessed with it. The curse should emphasize the negative.

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