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Assamite Sorcery: Paths, Rituals and Kalif

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  • Assamite Sorcery: Paths, Rituals and Kalif

    Dur-An-Ki is, arguably, regarded as one of the most ancient forms of Blood Sorcery. Recently, I've been dealing with it a lot in-game, and a player character has managed to pick some up themselves. This has mostly been fun, getting to watch them roleplay through the learning process.

    However, there's been a few issues.

    One, I've never used it before, but due to the (canon) teacher, the player has picked up the Dur-An:Ki version of The Focused Mind. It's been mostly fine, but I'm a little worried that I might be running Dual Thought incorrectly. Could anyone clarify how Focused Mind 4 works if trying to activate blood magic in the same turn as casting Dual Thought?


    Two, I'm really curious about what exactly (seriously, give me a broad and inclusive picture) the weapon created by Blade of Smoke and Shadow can damage. Spirits, ghosts and demons seem to be the focus, but in WoD, some of those terms can be vague. Are Banes spirits or "demons" here? Are Koldunic leleks regular spirits, Banes or demons? Different sources on Koldunism give different answers. This might be important, because I've got powerful Koldun in the setting. Furthermore, does the blade work on the Fallen? Is a fallen angel called a demon by its own core book actually a demon, or just a broken angel? Wouldn't Devil's Due type summoned demons fit a bit better (seeing as they're quasi-Earthbound)?

    Lastly, there's the issue of Kalif. As of right now, I'm planning on using Infusion of Kalif from Rites of the Blood to create the stuff. The ashipu player is excited about this part, mostly because of the opportunity to rp trance meditation and trying to ascend the Ladder of Heaven towards magical enlightenment. An indoor growing operation will likely be built, so they can produce their own cannabis plants to make the substance. How do you treat Kalif at your table? Is it rare, even for sorcerers? Common enough in the right circles? Do you ever portray it being used recreationally?

    And has anyone else found the measurements in Infusion of Kalif to be problematic? The book suggests using 20 ounces of hashish to create a single ounce of Kalif. That'd be fine, if twenty ounces of hashish wasn't a huge amount for anyone outside of the commercial cannabis industry to readily produce. I'd thought that, maybe, this was to indicate the rarity of the drug. However, the book goes on to direct one to place an entire ounce of Kalif, which would be a piece about the size of a golf ball, into a prepared hookah to smoke. That... seems odd. That's akin to saying that the recommended serving size for maple syrup is the entire bottle of syrup. It seems like too much to me. Maybe I'm wrong. I'd like to know your opinion on it, as I'm sorely tempted to simply change the measurement from ounces to (the more reasonable sounding) grams.

    If you have an opinion on any of these things, I definitely want to hear it!

    Thanks in advance!

    - Az
    Last edited by AzraelFirestorm; 10-28-2018, 12:12 PM.


    “Nobody is purely good or purely evil. Most of us are in-between. There are moths that explore the day and butterflies that play at night.”
    - Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute The Sun
    (She/Her)

  • #2
    The Kalif requirements seem to be glossed over by many GMs,
    If we consider the volume required for a vampire to smoke, it does make sense in a way; because Kindred usually don't absorb things by inhalation. getting mortals high on lesser amounts and drinking Kalif-infused blood would be a better use of Kalif, but the extra steps (and storage of infused blood) adds difficulty too (to the process, not the Roll)


    The wording of Blade of Smoke and Shadow:
    "However, the blade can now strike at incorporeal entities such as demons, ghosts, and spirits when they enter this plane of existence. It passes harmlessly through solid objects and flesh, and thus may be used to strike at possessing entities without damaging the host. Importantly, the enchanted blade may be used by anyone, not just the caster, and the user does not need to know Assamite Sorcery to benefit from its properties. All users do damage with the blade against demons, ghosts, and spirits as though they were fighting a normal, physical opponent."

    So, it lets you target incorporeal entities, not target "Demons ghosts and spirits" explicitly, so if they're incorporeal, they can get hurt and the host (in cases of possession) isn't hurt. Don't focus on the examples, but the main aspect - anything incorporeal can be targeted, regardless of the name or category. I'd include astral projecting targets, possibly Obtenebration shadow form (level 5 Obten) and a Vampire's "Soul" when possessing someone with Dominate.
    I don't know the Demon rules well enough to say what will happen, but I do believe that they are possessing a host body/corpse, so it would target the Demon, not the "Host Body" how ever that works in Demon: the Fallen system

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    • #3
      I put the Khalif symbiosis as something mostly for the Followers of Haquim branch of Dur-an-ki. I have other Ashipu, like was it Cret the Ventrue Methuselah that was an Ashipu, often not use Khalif.


      I think most consider Vampire magic that broadly effects demons to include Both banes and Fallen.


      It is a time for great deeds!

      Comment


      • #4
        In Demon the Fallen they have a very complete possession, like Wan Gui and their possession of their own body, or a Changeling. While they can be exercised much easier then a Changeling, who is half the mortals souls unless they are Sidhe, I would have it the blade only hurts them when they are outside their host. Generally a Demon’s Demon soul only possesses health levels when in between bodies.


        It is a time for great deeds!

        Comment


        • #5
          As to Focused Mind
          No power of it counts as a "Discipline activation" for limits of activations or multiple actions. You can activate all of them in a turn, if you have the blood per turn allowance to do it.

          Dual though (If successful) gives an extra action that can only be used for Mental actions, so it would allow 2 Thaumaturgy actions (like a double dose of Lure of Flames, or Blood Draining your opponent)

          Comment


          • #6
            I think there is a reference to growing Khalif by just watering pot plants with Vitae in Mexico by night.

            Comment


            • #7
              Isn’t Hashish made from Hemp not Cannibis? I’m not an expert though.


              It is a time for great deeds!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Eldagusto View Post
                Isn’t Hashish made from Hemp not Cannibis? I’m not an expert though.
                As a former grower, I can answer this one. Cannabis is the proper name for marijuana as a whole. Hemp is a term for the fiber of the cannabis plant, used for clothes, rope and other textiles. Hashish is derived from the pollen and resin glands taken from the flowers of a cannabis plant and pressed into form.

                Illithid Thank you so much for clearing up Dual Thought! That's a huge help. And I believe you and Eldagusto more than clarified that ritual for me, for which I am quite grateful.
                Last edited by AzraelFirestorm; 10-30-2018, 10:26 AM.


                “Nobody is purely good or purely evil. Most of us are in-between. There are moths that explore the day and butterflies that play at night.”
                - Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute The Sun
                (She/Her)

                Comment


                • #9
                  My confusion about the amount of Kalif recommended by the Infusion of Kalif ritual remains. The simple fact is, most smoking devices (including all but the most extravagant) can't hold a single ounce of hashish at one time, which is exactly what the ritual instructs you to do. I can, maybe, see smoking that amount in multiple "servings" over a night, but I'd be very surprised to find an appropriate smoking vessel that can handle such an amount in one bowl.

                  I'm still very tempted to change the measurements in the ritual from ounces to grams. I deal with hashish for medical reasons, and seeing the stuff up close regularly really makes me wonder if whoever created that particular ritual had any experience with the stuff at all. The ritual calls for twenty ounces of hashish to begin working. For visual reference, this is 10 grams (just over a third of an ounce) of "golden" hashish from Morocco.





                  For even the most seasoned of hashish smokers, that piece up there would take hours to consume. It'd probably take longer, though, because at some point one might likely become high enough to forget what one was doing in the first place. That is a lot of hashish, and it's still not even half the amount recommended by the ritual as a single serving for a hookah bowl.
                  Last edited by AzraelFirestorm; 10-30-2018, 11:39 AM.


                  “Nobody is purely good or purely evil. Most of us are in-between. There are moths that explore the day and butterflies that play at night.”
                  - Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute The Sun
                  (She/Her)

                  Comment

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