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Indispensable Mundane Items for Kindred

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  • #61
    Originally posted by g3taso View Post
    OK folks, we aren't having any Dark Ages love. Anyone have good ideas for medieval times?

    My contribution is a nice bottle of bitumen.
    Rope. Rope is always useful.

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    • #62
      Originally posted by g3taso View Post
      OK folks, we aren't having any Dark Ages love. Anyone have good ideas for medieval times?

      My contribution is a nice bottle of bitumen.
      A few off the top of the head ideas:
      • How about the most ostentatiously luxurious clothes you can afford? Nothing says, "Mmmm, them's good eats!", like someone trying to rob you.
      • Or the cheapest rags you can scrounge, so no one notices you, or, if they do, someone might at least pity a poor beggar.
      • A change of clothes and some soap. Soap sounds minor, but was fairly luxurious in the era. And it was kind of greasy and smelled terrible. But, after you've eaten the highwaymen who tried to mug you, you need to get the gore and blood off your clothes, face, hair, etc. if you want to hang around anybody who doesn't like hanging out with nocturnal cannibals.
      • Some extra food, preferably dried fruits, nuts or anything sweet, like a honey comb. I get you don't eat, but other people do. This can make a nice goodwill offering among the poor, and can even work with more well-to-do people if it is something unusual or of high quality. A small domestic animal, like a piglet, dove, or a lamb would make an even nicer bribe. Be careful with bigger gifts; they can make you seem shady.
      • A letter or marque of passage of some sort that charges you with traveling through the region on some errand for a high noble or the church. Local officials would be rightly suspicious of strangers wandering through their lands. If you have a (probably forged) document saying you are on some minor mission for a higher-up, it will make travel much easier.
      • A few pilgrim's medals could help explain your passage, as well.
      • Remember they don't call it the Dark Ages for nothing. No street lights. Virtually no municipal lighting. If you lack enhanced senses, being outside on a moon-less night is almost pitch black. Some sort of light source, like a torch would be helpful. But, then there are rotschreck issues.
      • A tiny boat, like a coracle or a small raft would be useful if you're traveling. Bridges were beyond rare and many roads simply ended at a "crossing" and re-emerged on the other side. A sufficiently well-sealed coracle *might* be argued to serve as a portable haven, if you're ST is feeling very, very generous.
      • Not precisely an item, but an abandoned village might be nice. Plagues, wars, etc. made these surprisingly common in the era.
      • A large bag, preferably of oiled skin, filled with stones. Why? Well, two things really. First, it's always nice to have something to hit people with, and, depending on your social class, proper weapons may be a no-no. Second... okay... so before the days of scuba gear there was virtually no way to recover the stuff from lost ships. Through the span of human history there have been many, many ship wrecks. Mostly ships carrying wine jugs and grain barrels and dead sailors, but, some had gold and such. People can't breathe underwater, but you... do you see where I am going with this? The stones are for ballast, unless you fill it up with better stuff you find on the ocean floor.
      • A shovel. For last minute sleeping accommodations.
      • Ten foot pole.
      • Length of rope.
      • Iron Rations.

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifes...=.5c9364ee03d0

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      • #63
        Originally posted by g3taso View Post
        OK folks, we aren't having any Dark Ages love. Anyone have good ideas for medieval times?

        My contribution is a nice bottle of bitumen.
        A good knife and a good ax, both as tools rather than as any martial use.
        A good layered cloak, for all means of concealment as for use as shelter in a pinch.
        Livestock of any kind as blood can be hard to source out there.
        Christian iconography and pilgrims medals as so much can be excused if it's for a religious reason.
        I feel like a monk's hair cassock excuses your presence in nearly any location and in any company in the way a janitors uniform would in modern times.

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        • #64
          Originally posted by g3taso View Post
          OK folks, we aren't having any Dark Ages love. Anyone have good ideas for medieval times?
          Burlap sacks and glass jars. You never know when you'll need to carry stuff around. Like loot, or a man's dismembered corpse. The jars are good for holding blood for at least a little while, in case you need to take a snack to go.


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          • #65
            Originally posted by rat_bastard View Post
            Base model weighs in at a whopping 29 oz, my buddy takes his backpacking. Not tremendously light but you don't need to be a brujah elder to lift one.
            Funny you're using the model with the shortest barrel length for that weight, after insisting on the importance that longer-barrel models exist. The 6.5" barrel model you've discussed throughout the thread weighs in at 32 ounces. That's unloaded weight, by the way, and as the case with any revolver its center of mass will be the cylinder, if not a little more frontal in the case of long-barreled models which significantly alters its firing characteristics opposed to, for example, any semi-auto pistol.

            The shorty shotgun you are so hot on is actually heavily restricted or banned in easily 4 times as many states as the judge.
            Depending upon jurisdiction, and how that jurisdiction defines assault weapon. Not every state with an assault weapons ban upholds the definition as specified in the Brady Bill (for damned good reason). Only CA and MA, if I remember right, maintain conditional restrictions on pump-action shotguns. The Mossberg Shockwave may be banned on a by-state basis on the basis of its barrel length, but it is not an NFA firearm; likewise, Benelli MX series shotguns may be banned on a by-state basis, on the basis of it being semi-automatic plus cosmetics which vary by model.

            There is also something to be said for the idiot proof nature of a wheelgun.
            If we were having this conversation twenty or thirty years ago, you'd be spot on. We're not, and you're not; contemporary striker-fired semi-autos are the most foolproof handgun designs ever to have landed in holsters. They're easier to learn, simpler to maintain, safer, and more reliable than any other handgun, revolvers included.

            ...I am thinking tools for a basic 3 discipline dot fresh of the fang neonate, not someone who as a matter of course has better options.
            Starting-level characters can still have Arsenal, or Contacts/Allies (underworld, professional, or military). They can also start with a Firearms rating of up to five dots, after freebie expenditure. There is literally no scenario in which a character with the contacts or personal know-how to make a targeted firearms purchase, and handload rounds, for the purpose of werewolf-killing would choose a Taurus Judge over an eminently more practical and useful firearm with greater stopping power.

            Which, by the way, this is why I've held off on the notion of clay shooting with a Judge. People shoot clays with pistols, too. Hell, I've seen people shoot clays with subsonic .22LR, hilariously enough. To say this is to say nothing at all, really. I'm sure you're aware the people who do this, probably own the firearm, have extensive experience with it and other firearms, and have learned to overcome its drawbacks sufficient to do this?

            Now, let's discuss this:

            How much of your games is spent filling out fictional paperwork? You're an immortal creature of the night with superpowers...
            So, the straw purchase canard. Sure, it's an option for a vampire. But, again, if they have the know-how and contacts, why would they not opt for a more practical choice? God forbid the vampire ever gets caught with it, let alone if caught in it and it was used in a crime; that's a level of legal hell that, bare minimum, will cost a major boon or two, a righteous ass-chewing from the Sheriff and/or Prince, and likely a dot or two of Status for being dumb enough to get caught if word gets to the Harpies.

            You're missing my ultimate point, which is a Taurus Judge is a horrendously impractical weapon for the list of drawbacks and caveats I've pointed out.

            It's also a rifle, which makes it more difficult to carry around.
            Shotgun, actually.

            Seriously, you do get that this is a game where you play a vampire right? I'm getting the impression you saw the vampire accountant Steven Root played in Tru Blood and said "that's the guy! That's who I wanna play! Is filling out government forms manipulation + academics cause you know I have to be boss at that dice pool!"
            ...and you'd be right. One of my favorite PC's I ever played was a Dominate Malkie CPA.

            You'd also be right if you guessed I was banned from playing that archetype from at least one table, on account of how horrifically overpowered they become over the course of collecting a metric shit-ton of boons, Contacts, and Allies. Especially Tremere bureaucrats, with the laundry list of bureaucratic rituals, paths like Technomancy, and in-clan access to Dominate. I asked an ST if I could play a Tremere bureaucrat once, he and the rest of the table laughed me out of the room knowing full well the shit I'd pull with one.

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            • #66
              I've been following your gun discussion, but have kind of gotten lost in the back and forth.

              I know next to nothing about guns, and my eyes tend to glaze over when I hear about them. ("You hold it with the bendy part towards you, right?")

              When I ST'd I punted on the whole issue and just drew up mechanical stats for Small, Medium, Large, and Giant Guns, and then noted auto-fire options. My players used actual names for the weapons, because they knew this stuff. It seemed to work.

              Let's assume a vampire can get just about any gun they want, some way, somehow. Though, as you mention, there may be very different outcomes for being caught with one.

              Would you mind giving a summary of a variety of guns a play group might want and what the various advantages and disadvantages of them are? Yes, I know White Wolf has a whole books that detail this stuff, Armory and Combat, but, I don't have the attention span where guns are concerned to slog through it. Would it be possible to just sort break down the highlights of the topic?

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              • #67
                A musical instrument. Eternity is a long time, and lonely.
                My character happens to carry a 44 magnum Ruger snubnose revolver, and from time to time has indulged in shotguns. More exotic fare is available of course, but draws a lot of mortal scrutiny.
                Last edited by g3taso; 08-12-2017, 12:23 PM.

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                • #68
                  Originally posted by Nosimplehiway View Post
                  ...I don't have the attention span where guns are concerned to slog through it. Would it be possible to just sort break down the highlights of the topic?
                  Okay, I had a long-ass post written about this and I moronically closed the tab, so here's a quick and dirty ELI5.

                  The run-down in V20 is actually pretty good and you can use that for most cases. The big thing isn't the individual gun, but rather it's caliber. The most common rounds you'll need to know, by classification:

                  Light: .22LR (yes, it can be an exceptionally lethal round with proper shot placement), .32, 9mm, .38 special, .380.

                  Heavy: .357 magnum, .40 S&W, .44 magnum, .45 ACP, and basically anything larger.

                  Special note about .38 special and .357 magnum. They're actually the same diameter (.357 inches), and handguns designed for .357 magnum can fire .38 special safely. Handguns designed for .38 special CAN NOT fire .357 magnum safely; .357 is a much more powerful round, and .38 special guns cannot handle that amount of stress and pressure. Players who know their shit will gravitate towards .357 magnum, due to this and the exceptional lethality of the round.

                  The reason "heavy revolver" does more damage than "heavy pistol", is as a general rule (there are exceptions) revolvers chambered for exceptionally large and powerful rounds (like the .480 Ruger or .500 S&W) are more common than pistols.

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                  • #69
                    Originally posted by Theodrim View Post


                    Special note about .38 special and .357 magnum. They're actually the same diameter (.357 inches), and handguns designed for .357 magnum can fire .38 special safely. Handguns designed for .38 special CAN NOT fire .357 magnum safely; .357 is a much more powerful round, and .38 special guns cannot handle that amount of stress and pressure. Players who know their shit will gravitate towards .357 magnum, due to this and the exceptional lethality of the round.
                    Specifically revolvers, not all pistols. Otherwise completely spot on.

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                    • #70
                      Originally posted by rat_bastard View Post
                      Specifically revolvers, not all pistols. Otherwise completely spot on.
                      I've never heard of a semi-auto pistol built for .38 special never being able to fire .357 magnum safely. In theory it should be less safe, due to the mechanism of operation; semi-autos have a lot more potential points of failure (slide, spring, trigger assembly) than a revolver.

                      On the other hand, to what rat_bastard is alluding when he says this if I know where he's going, is that pistols built for .357 magnum cannot reliably fire .38 special because the weaker round doesn't have the power to cycle the slide. It's safe to fire .38 special out of them, but the firearm has to be treated as a single-shot due to having to manually cycle the slide after each shot.

                      ...and okay, if this conversation's going to continue, I have to drop going that extra mile to eliminate ambiguity for those not up on firearms lingo. "Pistol" is shorthand for "semi-automatic handgun", as opposed to "revolver" which is a handgun with a revolving cylinder. So, from this point forward, if I say pistol that's what I mean.

                      [Additional addendum, if your players are firearms junkies, they may also look for shotties in bores other than 12-ga. The other widely-available bores are 10-ga., 20-ga., and the aforementioned .410; there are also 8-ga., 6-ga., 4-ga., and 16-ga. but they're so rare they likely won't come up in the course of a normal chronicle. The rulebooks have always used 12-ga. as their default, but different calibers of shotgun have pretty widely-varying ranges of stopping power. I've always used the calculation ( 20 - gauge ) for damage on gauges other than 12, with a minimum of 4L for 20-ga. and .410.]
                      Last edited by Theodrim; 08-15-2017, 05:08 PM.

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                      • #71
                        Remember, though, that vampires don't exist in a vacuum. You'll probably be laughed out of Elysium or a Sabbat ball if you're lugging around a backpack of survival equipment. Furthermore, if you're taking a survival kit along whenever you go out into the street, the ST is well within their rights to rule that you have acquired the Paranoid Derangement.

                        There should be a constant psychological tension between having lots of the necessary equipment on hand, and keeping up appearances of complete confidence and detachment in front of your peers. That's one of the day-to-day nuances that really enriches a chronicle if you roleplay it with attention to detail.

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                        • #72
                          Originally posted by Sultanabdal View Post
                          Remember, though, that vampires don't exist in a vacuum. You'll probably be laughed out of Elysium or a Sabbat ball if you're lugging around a backpack of survival equipment. Furthermore, if you're taking a survival kit along whenever you go out into the street, the ST is well within their rights to rule that you have acquired the Paranoid Derangement.

                          There should be a constant psychological tension between having lots of the necessary equipment on hand, and keeping up appearances of complete confidence and detachment in front of your peers. That's one of the day-to-day nuances that really enriches a chronicle if you roleplay it with attention to detail.
                          "Vampires or mortals receive derangements under conditions of intense terror, guilt, or anxiety. If a player botches a Virtue or Willpower roll (for example, when confronted with Rötschreck), the Storyteller may decide that the experience causes a derangement in the character. Other examples of derangement-inducing events include killing a loved one while in a frenzy, being buried alive as part of a Sabbat ritual, or seeing hundreds of years of careful scheming dashed in an instant of bad luck. Generally, any experience that causes intense and unpleasant emotion or thoroughly violates a character’s beliefs or ethics is severe enough to cause a derangement. The Storyteller determines which derangement a character receives, working with the player to choose (or create) one appropriate to the character’s personality and the circumstances of the event that caused the disorder."

                          Golden rule aside, I feel like carrying a survival kit along is a pretty big stretch for assigning a derangement.

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                          • #73
                            I agree that these rules are indeed the most relevant for gameplay. However, there is also a sort of obsession-laced insanity that ancillae and elders sink into as a result of the weirdness of their daily routines, among other things. Archon Bell would be completely justified in bringing along duct tape, a double-barreled shotgun, and all sorts of vital goods as he runs errands in one city after another. A typical Camarilla kindred, however, would only reasonably carry a few items, and unobtrusively at that. Hauling around more than that on a daily basis would make them a target of ridicule, and would indicate some sort of slow degeneration.

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                            • #74
                              Originally posted by Sultanabdal View Post
                              Archon Bell would be completely justified in bringing along duct tape, a double-barreled shotgun, and all sorts of vital goods as he runs errands in one city after another. A typical Camarilla kindred, however, would only reasonably carry a few items, and unobtrusively at that. Hauling around more than that on a daily basis would make them a target of ridicule, and would indicate some sort of slow degeneration.
                              The desire to carry stuff for every situation is largely the outcome of GMs running campaigns where it's more likely to be relevant (and unlife-saving) than not. At which point this becomes a "you laughed, but I wouldn't be here with you if not for my zippo". And if the GM keeps insisting that everybody dismisses all the repeatedly-appearing situations and the usefulness of stuff for vampires in such situations, you've got a meta-clash of sorts, like when in horror plots everyone all PCs and their players should know that splitting up is a bad idea, but the GM gets angry if the party sticks together.

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                              • #75
                                Originally posted by Sultanabdal View Post
                                Remember, though, that vampires don't exist in a vacuum. You'll probably be laughed out of Elysium or a Sabbat ball if you're lugging around a backpack of survival equipment. (...)
                                I doubt people would laugh much (with malicious intent) if one has a reputation and stories of constantly successfully using the items in the backpack. Just one such a story might be enough, in fact - especially if the achievement somehow helped or saved another Kindred or a Ghoul.
                                Last edited by Muad'Dib; 08-27-2017, 05:41 AM.

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