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[WIR] Chicago by Night 5th Edition

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  • The Anarch are a sect that needed a buff and that could have been done without the camarilla not being nerfed , give them ELDERS who truly belive in the cause or are like the Carthian elders from requiem and like to have a democracy to manipulate puppet candidates and rule with the power of populism becuase this is what both TYLER and CRITIAS where doing.Give them also a boost in members due the neonates of the XXI century being born in middle of the democracy and being tired of elder manipulation with make them more dificult to control by elders.

    Heck there is reason why I give them Marcel , Critias , Carlhoun and Tyler veiled support becuase i wanted them to have a realistic opportunity as a faction.

    More about Nicolai:He is interesting becuase he is a really pathetic chantry leader , he is the frienzoned elder whose bad choices have made him be seen as nothing but a powerful clown and this creates a way for the players to ascend in the pyramid wich is great.In my games he is aware of no Tremere outside the chantry taking him seriusly and the rage is building making him degenerate.In my next session he is gonna leave Damian on the verge of death by blood boiling him due to jeusly


    https://www.deviantart.com/cicerondixit/gallery

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    • Charles "Crook" Dawson

      Type: NPC

      Synopsis: Nosferatu Hustler.

      Review: I like Charles Dawson as a character as he's very much a character I like to play and I'll be honest is somewhat similar to one of the NPCs I submitted to the Chicago by Night Kickstarter. Basically, I love playing the character who is outwardly harmless and friendly but actually conceals a rather sinister Machiavellian side. In a game about vampires pretending to be something they're not, human in the case of the Masquerade, it's strange how so many Kindred are exactly what they appear to be.

      We have "false friends" and "seemingly harmless characters who turn out to be horribly dangerous" in Disney cartoons like Hans and Bellweather the Sheep. However, in Chicago by Night, I think the only character that is actively maintaining that sort of Masquerade is Helena. Son, who is one of the vampires who hides the worst sorts of secrets, is a character who most people suspect of SOMETHING sinister so he isn't a good example.

      Part of this is inevitable because I suspect every vampire has a instinctive knowledge that they shouldn't completely trust their fellow vampires. Vampire society is a more realistic version of Drow society, really, in that everyone will eventually screw over everyone else eventually. Game Theory as detailed by John Nash (albeit simplified in A Beautiful Mind) is something they haven't really mastered--or even enlightened self-interest. You can't really develop a reputation as a good guy without having a few incidents of throwing someone under the bus.

      I thus like a lot of Charles Dawson's story being based around the fact that he's a always-smiling, always happy go lucky disabled guy who may or may not have murdered his own parents but certainly has murdered a lot of people since then. I like the idea that Charles is a pyromaniac and has a merit or Loresheet that allows him to handle fire much better than most Kindred (even if he's not any more immune to it than anyone else).

      One element I like about Crook is that in addition to being such a capable player of people's sympathies is that he's also a fake in terms of his presentation and haven. Crook is a fairly wealthy Kindred or at least upper-middle class and has five restaraunts called "Crooks" around Chicago that have the appearance of Chicago speakeasies and dive bars but presumably cater to a middle class "roughing it" clientele. It's a nice little hint to his true nature, doubly so if you find the torture dungeons in the cellar.

      Lots you can do with Crook, especially if you're High Humanity PCs and discover his evil deeds but can't do anything about it.


      Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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      • Rowan

        Type: NPC

        Synopsis: Body-modification obsessed performance artist.

        Review: Rowan is one of the more interesting original characters in Chicago by Night 5E. As much as I like Erzulie, Mercy Valdez, Steadman, and Sierra--I have to say that it's the little characters who make all the difference. There's a very human story in Rowan's tale of body dysmorphia and how they cope with it once they've been transformed into a monster. The fact they have a deeply held belief system and sense of community that is related to Burning Man is also where truth is stranger than fiction.

        Rowan is a character who actually sticks with me less because of her handling of real-life issues than the fantastical ones. This is perhaps a shameful admission to make but in terms of storytelling, I'm quite fascinated about how a character like Rowan copes with things that have absolutely nothing to do with the real world and everything to do with the supernatural changes they deal with.

        For example, Rowan is a person who is now stuck in a horrifying monster's body that wasn't comfortable when she was a human. However, it's a wholly different sort of thing than a human experiences. What happens when and if they acquire Protean from someone like Erzulie or Rose Hernandez? As a Nosferatu, they'd never be able to change the deformities they'd suffer (I rule that Nosferatu can only change themselves with Vicissitude for one night and sometimes just one seen) but I wouldn't rule against changing their gender or other elements.

        Re: Kindred racism, sexism, and transphobia

        I also appreciate Matthew Dawkin's team spelling out an element that has always been canon in my games that the older a vampire gets, the less gender and sexual roles bind them. Whether you're gay, straight, bisexual, or lesbian--the simple fact is that you get a sexual thrill whenever you feed. You're not a person, you're a parasite wearing the corpse of a person.

        Whether you like sex with your partners or have a sexual preference for feeding is really more a form of "seasoning" than anything else. It's interesting that Rowan doesn't know this and thinks Kindred society is going to be full of prejudice against her for the fact they're all from centuries ago.

        It actually comes up in my discussion of Balthazar and his racism that it's very PECULIAR that he has it among Kindred. It's actually the result of the fact he's been pretending to be a Southern Small Town Hick Sheriff for centuries more than you could keep from your mortal days across a century or so. In my interpretation of Kindred society, you rapidly learn to leave racism and sexiam beside because women can make you eat your own fingers. I feel like that is one area where Kindred are more progressive than their human counterparts. Its not just societal but genetic as vampires just don't feel the kinship with humans necessary to worry about that element of tribalism.

        Some STs don't agree.

        Re: Masquerade

        I also like that Rowan uses the often-overlooked element of being a Masquerade violation. Very few NPCs are ever depicted as breaking the Masquerade and that's an overlooked source of adventure hooks. Rowan has already offended Nathaniel Bordruff, Wauneka, and Charles Dawson with more on the way. It'll be interesting to see how they might transition to becoming an Anarch and making new friends--the Blood Disco seeming like a very good place to transition to.


        Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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        • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
          I feel like that is one area where Kindred are more progressive than their human counterparts. Its not just societal but genetic as vampires just don't feel the kinship with humans necessary to worry about that element of tribalism.

          Some STs don't agree.
          I'm one of those who disagrees. Vampires, to my way of thinking, are nasty shit heels. Becoming a vampire is like trapping an insect in amber - the personality is frozen at the moment of death. The very nature of being a vampire preserves the worst aspects of a person and kills their best aspects. Savvy vampires keep their sexism (or racism, or whatever) locked down around more powerful monsters. But they will vent it on those they can abuse as an exercise in power. It's up to the players to do better, and be better, than the world around them.

          Still, I understand why the different publishers of the WoD properties have not pursued this course.

          Edit: In the real world the victims of abuse generally have to take the abuse all too often. In the WoD, the victims can kill the mother fucker who is abusing them.
          Last edited by Grumpy RPG Reviews; 02-10-2019, 05:42 PM.

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          • Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post

            I'm one of those who disagrees. Vampires, to my way of thinking, are nasty shit heels. Becoming a vampire is like trapping an insect in amber - the personality is frozen at the moment of death. The very nature of being a vampire preserves the worst aspects of a person and kills their best aspects. Savvy vampires keep their sexism (or racism, or whatever) locked down around more powerful monsters. But they will vent it on those they can abuse as an exercise in power. It's up to the players to do better, and be better, than the world around them.

            Still, I understand why the different publishers of the WoD properties have not pursued this course.
            Yes, I basically don't think this would work in my campaigns but I never really much cared for Requiem's idea that vampires are completely unable to change themselves. It's an element I'm going to bring up with Kevin Jackson that he's going from being a intelligent gangster to being an incredibly intelligent super-businessman and scientist ala Lex Luthor.

            But again, it's YMMV.


            Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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            • 5000 views!

              A landmark for reading through a book that isn't even out yet!


              Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

              Comment


              • Adze

                Type: NPC

                Synopsis: Slave turned the coolest MF around.

                Review: I feel a little weird reviewing Adze because he's actually very similar to a character that I am deeply fond of in my novels. A case of parallel development because, "former slave who becomes a vampire as well as one of the most intelligent, cunning, ruthless but somewhat humane, and 'made the best of their situation" vampires around is an inherently good idea. My character, Thoth, in the STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON books would probably be more Tremere, Brujah Thaumaturge, or Serpent of Light Antitribu though. Weirdly, both of the vampires end up being crime lords who built their fortunes in Prohibition with jazz clubs/speakeasies and are in love with beautiful vampire transwoman. That is some eerie similarities.

                Either way, I love the character of Adze because he's a character who has a thoroughly sympathetic background while also every bit the chip on his shoulder you would respect. I can't fault any vampire who spends a century hunting down slave owners and ex-slave owners. Yeah, he's Humanity 5 but I think of him as the kind of guy who might bounce back up to Humanity 6 unlike most Kindred who have no way to go but down.

                Adze is easily the most interesting new Elder in the book and frankly, as much as I like Cedrick Calhoun, may be someone who would do a better job as Primogen if not Clan Leader. Mind you, Adze isn't actually tied to the Nosferatu and that's something that provides a very interesting twist on a common archetype. Adze was accepted and loved by a different community of outcasts and is the leader of the city's Caitiff.

                I'm a bit disappointed with the choice to state that Adze claims to be a Camarilla vampire, even begrudgingly, however. Bluntly, when you have something like 30 Caitiff vampires under your control that are not accepted as members of the Camarilla and almost certainly weren't embraced under the Traditions--that means you are an Anarch. I also appreciate when intelligent powerful schemes like Adze are incorporated into the Anarch cause.

                I appreciate that the relationship with Erzulie and Adze is depicted as genuinely loving with as close to the True Love merit as you probably have. I also like that the two aren't Blood Bound to one another, though that implies they don't share blood and that's almost sad. I'd maybe give the two of them the True Love Merit and explain the Blood Bond simply doesn't work between the two because I'm sappy that way.

                One weird element I'd like to comment about in this book is the fact Adze is a character who demonstrates a lot of the contradictions about Kindred humanity as well as how "emergency embraces" can not make much sense logically but make a lot of sense emotionally. His sire is described as someone with a "taste for runaway slaves" but only feeds on Adze after he thinks he's been murdered by bigots. It's only when he finds out he's alive that he Embraces Adze because he didn't realize he was killing the guy. His sire, presumably a bigot in his own right, then abandons him.

                As an alternative ruler to Kevin Jackson, I think Adze is a very interesting case and probably has a much better chance of pulling it off than the vast majority of other candidates. He's already effectively Prince of a vampire city (or Baron of a Barony) with the Blood Disco. I would be very interested in what Adze thinks of the Anarch movement in the city and his thoughts on its leaders, honestly. People like Gengis, Maldavis, and so on.

                Will Adze be showing up in THE CHICAGO FOLIO or LET THE STREETS RUN RED, The Gentleman Gamer ?
                Last edited by CTPhipps; 02-11-2019, 01:33 PM.


                Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                  5000 views!

                  A landmark for reading through a book that isn't even out yet!
                  whilst i don't really have time to comment, I am enjoying reading this and seeing the various points being raised by everyone. Even nice to see some things i'd missed or not considered on my read through on 'release'

                  Keep it up!

                  Comment


                  • Thin Bloods (Duskborn)

                    I love Thin Bloods and think of them as one of the best creations of V:TM. I also know people who hate them with the same passion Mrs. White had in Clue. "Flames, on the side of my face. Heaving, breathing, breaths..."

                    Thin Bloods at their basic core are characters that are perfectly able to be good guy vampires. A Thin Blood can survive on blood bags, animal blood (which is PRETTY POTENT to them), or a little nibble from a human every night. I was actually surprised to find out they don't frenzy unless its magically induced and you have to be literally starved like Lily in Vampire: The Masquerade: Bloodlines to have them drain someone dry. Throw in the immortality and it's actually a pretty sweet deal.

                    Which is, of course, why other vampires pick up the slack for making it a curse. Thin Bloods are persecuted by the Camarilla and even if they're not viewed as signs of Gehenna, they're second-class undead and free ghouls. Anarchs tolerate them (barely) and the Camarilla consider them a Masquerade violation at best. I've always liked the idea you can tell a lot about a vampire by how they treat Thin Bloods.

                    One of the most interesting interactions we had in our games was my Follower of Set PC (yes, I play too) actively assisted the Thin Bloods in the city as part of a Underground Railroad. He was a cold blooded bastard who considered humans to be little more than cattle and toys but Thin Bloods were vampires, Caine dammit, and thus needed our help! He actually ran a housing development with like 40 vampires he supplied animal blood and human blood that the other PCs had to figure out was either a terrible idea or a good idea. They ended up becoming its guardians and using Animalism 2 for them to have an endless supply of rats before buying a "kosher" ranch.

                    (The ST eventually ruled the PCs giving them guns and knowledge of the Traditions resulted in it becoming the basis of a national militia and them getting in trouble with a LOT of people)

                    Thin Bloods provide Gamemasters an interesting opportunity for player characters to be the Elders and Big Dogs of an interaction without actually making them Elders. The Bloodlines interactions with the PC was always entertaining to me because they were like Prince Lodin to them. The PC could take them under their wing, teach them the Traditions, and give them a bit of a heads up (well they could if that was an option) or just chase them out of town or screw with them.

                    It's an inherently interesting set of interactions and I like that Thin Bloods are now in sufficient numbers and around the block enough that they're trying to assert themselves a bit (Duskborn!). I dont consider them Anarchs but more Anarch adjacent because as much as I love the Movement--I know they're still a bunch of assholes who define usefulness by how much ass you can kick. Which Thin Bloods cannot, at all. The only reason the Thin Bloods probably haven't blown the lid off the Masquerade completely is probably there are a few decent eggs in the Movement that have helped them a wee bit. Smiling Jack, the Bloodlines PC, and characters like mine included.

                    Even so, we have "Flyboy" and the Thin Bloods who blew the whistle on their fellow vamps.

                    Re: Thin Blood Alchemy

                    I am of mixed feelings regarding Thin Blood Alchemy and will state my opinion: I love Thin Blood Alchemy but it shouldn't be a substitute for Disciplines. Thin Bloods in my game are capable of learning 1 dot in Disciplines generally and up to 3 dots in a single favored discipline.

                    This is a house rule of mine and it has absolutely nothing to do with the way previous rules has been done but strikes a nice balance for making Thin Bloods playable in my game while not disrupting their general weakness. Honestly, the 3 dot thing may be a bit too much given the general powering down of Neonates and something player characters and Jenna Cross (anyone know her?) should be restricted to but I've always ruled that certain vampires are just naturally more powerful than others.

                    Besides, for dealing with anyone else but Kindred, Thin Blood superpowers are still superpowers. As I had Captain Boomerang say in my DC Adventures game, "A lame superpower is still a superpower, mate."

                    For me, Thin Blood Alchemy should be a new thing and not necessarily something all Thin Bloods know either instinctively or not. To have Thin Blood Alchemy, you have to know a guy who knows a guy who printed it off the internet and distributed it to you. Even then, you have to have a steady supply of Kindred blood and that requires a dealer. As such, I'm kind of wondering where the hell most of the Kindred here got their Thin Blood Alchemy as everyone has it in this section.

                    Ben Galura

                    Type: NPC

                    Synopsis: Thin Blood fortune teller.

                    Reviewer: I have mixed feelings regarding Ben Galura, who I really wish had been one of the Malkavian clan. He's fairly close since he's a Thin Blooded of the Malkavian lineage but I think it would have benefited the clan to have him as a slightly more powerful character. Mostly because the only thing I love every bit as much as Anarchs in Vampire: The Masquerade is Malkavians. Certainly, if I ever use Ben in my games then he'll be a 13th generation Malkavian. I may also make him the childe of Evan Klein (since a "fat man" makes perfect sense as one of Evan's many personalities).

                    The premise of the character is that he was, at least as far as I can tell, a Numina-possessing mortal who either possessed a few low-level dots in Divination or possibly just a merit. He was also a trained huckster and fraud that almost certainly didn't benefit his situation when he tried to convince Lodin of his actual gifts.

                    Ben is certainly a seer but the problem is he's not a very good seer. To use an odd example, he's a bit like Rincewind, Professor Trelawney, or Schmendrick in that he does have real power but it's very-very unreliable bordering to nonexistent. See the above Captain Boomerrang quote.

                    Ben is an interesting character primarily for the events of the past couple of decades in Vampire: The Masquerade. As a character, he's successfully predicted the majority of the bad things that have happened to the Tremere, the Sabbat, the Camarilla, and vampiredom as a whole with the Second Inquisition. All of this would have sounded like doom and gloom to Lodin and other Elders (just like so many players were OUTRAGED at the changes of 5E) but it makes him a slightly more respectable seer.

                    It's just he predicted things years off and made the mistake of saying to the King (Lodin's) face that he was going to die at the hands of Lupines. I think you could easily imagine Dusable, Son, or Olaf trying to kidnap Ben after this and force him to diablerize someone in order to "up" his power level. Certainly, with his Thin Blood Alchemy, I think Ben could imitate Auspex or Blood Sorcery enough to become a much more effective seer. That would almost certainly make him a danger that other people would try to kill as the first thing we always did in our Forgotten Realms coup attempts was kill the seers! (inevitably followed by, "Betcha didn't see that coming, did ya?" Except, well, when they did).

                    Ben is aware of the danger of Nerissa Blackwater and the threat she poses to Chicago (if any) but I have to say that I'm confused as to why he would be aware of her but not Helena or Menele. Nerissa Blackwater may be terrifying and dangerous but so far she's mostly just curious and doesn't seem like she's going to begin her own little mini-Gehenna, eating the entirety of the White FolkTM and Caine Worshipers. Helena, by contrast, strikes me as a far bigger threat and more interesting thing for Ben to know about (as well as keep his mouth shut regarding). Also, you could tie it into Greek mythology with oracles.

                    I'm inclined also to have Kevin Jackson completely uninterested in Ben and probably have Damien have standing orders to kill him if he ever comes near an Elysium. Thin Bloods are automatically not members of the Camarilla to begin with and I am of the mind Kevin is like Jan Pieterzoon in that he's, if not a Flat Earth Atheist, at least a nonbeliever in any kind of magic or mysticism that cannot be demonstratebly proven with science.
                    Last edited by CTPhipps; 02-12-2019, 11:43 AM.


                    Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                    • Originally posted by chipotlechris View Post
                      whilst i don't really have time to comment, I am enjoying reading this and seeing the various points being raised by everyone. Even nice to see some things i'd missed or not considered on my read through on 'release'

                      Keep it up!
                      I appreciate everyone who is taking the time to read my works. I'm also hoping I'm able to cast a light on characters that readers hadn't considered or just throw an idea or two for them to use in their games.


                      Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

                      Comment


                      • *EXTRA LONG*

                        Noah "Flyboy" Grewal

                        Type: NPC

                        Preview

                        Noah "Flyboy" Grewal

                        Synopsis: Spy for the Second Inquisition and the most powerful Thin Blood in the World.

                        Review: I've said a lot of characters are my favorite or the best characters in the book. Noah isn't either of these but he's a character that may be better than both of these things because he's the most useful of the creations of Chicago by Night. Indeed, I've often debated posting his preview on the forums and just asking people what they think of the character.

                        Over on RPG.net, in fact, when Noah's preview went up there was a small riot as people who already didn't like the Second Inquisition went into a kind of Rotschrek as the implications of the character doubled down before blasting through what they'd objected to. If you're confused by what I mean, this will take a bit to explain but the short version is a lot of long-time vampire fans hate the Second Inquisition because it messes with their power fantasy.

                        For whatever reason, there's a decent number of fans who think the idea of humans fighting back is inherently stupid and believe strongly the game should be, "Vampires rule. Humans drool." This isn't an entirely unreasonable position because the 1st Edition of the game beat the "hidden masters of the night" drum hard. Also, the Masquerade often only makes sense if the vampires have a stranglehold on the world.

                        I'm not a big fan of that interpretation actually. Despite my love for all things 1st Edition, I appreciate the idea that the Masquerade exists because at the end of the day it's never been the Antediluvians or Lupines that was the greatest danger to the undead. In my games, I often beat home the idea, "if the Masquerade is ever broken in the Modern Nights, it will be a few days before every vampire in the world is done. The only thing that could save the Kindred race would be Dominate 10 from Ventrue and even then only because it's their food supply being threatened. The Dominate 10 will also be just to restore the Masquerade too."

                        To give you a sense of how I treat the Second Inquisition, in my 5E Chicago by Night game, I had 150K vampires in 1999 and 75K in 2018. The Beckoning, Second Inquisition, Gehenna War and so on had destroyed half of the vampire race. It didn't affect the day to day life of vampires in Chicago because it was perceived as a "safe" city and was even more overcrowded than before with 200 vampirs living in its area but whole swaths of the East Coast, almost the entire Sabbat, and other locations were wiped clean of vampire presence. It established a nice threat that the vampire race might end not with a bang but a whimper. In "canon" I think something like 7000 vampires have been destroyed by the SI which is still close to 10% of the undead in the world.

                        In other words, the Second Inquisition is no joke. How did they become so effective? Noah Grewal. Because in previous games you had the SAD, NSA, and other agencies completely ignorant. You had a similar case in Hunter: The Reckoning where even finding out a Clan name ruined the experience. Flyboy? Flyboy is just walking around Elysium, chilling with a drink in his hand, while recording every single one of your names as well as descriptions. Brujah, Toreador, Tremere, Malkavian? He knows them and now does the government.

                        Theoretically.

                        The brilliance of Flyboy isn't how you're utterly screwed or how utterly screwed everyone else is, assuming there's more of these Thin Blood infiltrators. Instead, the best part of Flyboy is that he actually shows why the Second Inquisition is NOT burning a place to the ground. Flynoy implies the CIA (or whichever shadowy faction he's working for) doesn't want to outright exterminate Kindred. Instead, they want to monitor them and know exactly what they are dealing with. This makes sense once the initial panic wears off as Kindred become more like drug dealers, cartel bosses, and extremist groups. You might want to see them wiped off the Earth but once you realize they've always been there then they become a possible resource to use or just the question of, "who is going to pay for the extermination of vampirekind?"

                        In the short-lived British TV series, Ultraviolet, one of the characters comments why they don't reveal the existence of vampires to the public. One of the group proclaims the reason for doing so is: "Listen. Every week there's a panic about some puny little bug. Now how do you think it would be if this got out? Hm? You'll have paranoia, you'll have vigilantes, you'll have people running back to religion in droves. The next thing you know, you'll have the Archbishop up for Prime Minister. I don't fancy living in Iran, do you?" Or in less militant atheist terms, the governments know they'd lose most of their power if it was found out Satan was real.

                        Plus, as we see with many corrupt CIA officials in RL, Noah is using his position to benefit himself and doesn't quite see why he should be 100% loyal to destroying vampiredom when he can use it to make a lot of money.

                        Noah, himself, is a fascinating character even without his Second Inquisition ties as the idea of a Thin Blooded who is just smart enough to take over a billion-dollar industry like O'Hara Airport and repurpose it to his use has its own power. Effectively, every vampire has to pay tribute to Noah's domain and while Kevin Jackson may have the power of the city, that kind of influence means that if he tried to dislodge Noah by force then he might not actually win. Besides, what vampire WOULD you trust with unlimited amounts of cash and access to the city?

                        Normally, Noah would be portrayed as a completely controlled pawn of Helena but I like the idea that Helena is (in a rare moment of failure) blind to Noah's true allegiances. Maybe the CIA had Numina psychics hide certain things in his mind or maybe it's secretly being aided by the Technocracy or maybe she flat out never read his mind when he was thinking of his bosses. Either way, it's hard to imagine a 4th generation vampire carring what a Thin Blood thinks and all the sweeter if she's being taken for a ride by him.

                        Note: His stats are very very weird for an ex-Marine as was noted in another thread. Stamina 1, no Brawl, huge muscular build but Strength 2? One might revise this before printing if he's not meant to have been a Marine who has completely let himself go.

                        WoD Connection: 5th Edition Vampire is the only book out now so we only have past connections to WOD Splats as well as references to things like Lupines as well as mages. If you're inclined to do a World of Darkness rather than just vampires, though, then Noah might be a decent place to actually branch from there as well. He's an excellent "onion" character where you can peel back one layer (that he's an overly powerful Thin Blood succeeding through the power of money as well as military connections) to the next (The Second Inquisition) to another still.

                        In my 5th Edition Chicago by Night game (the aformeneitoned "half of all kindred have been wiped out and the survivors are really upset about that"), I established that the Second Inquisition was receiving aid from various factions within the World of Darkness. Because at the end of the day, the only thing that every faction in the supernatural world can agree on is, "as much we need to all keep our secrets--fuck the other guys."

                        My SI is run by humans for humans BUTTTTTT, well, it also has help from the Technocracy, the anti-vampire Traditionalists (which is virtually all of them), Kinfolk trying to keep people from thinking werewolves exist ("Those Gangrel people must be the origin of the myth of werewolves!"), Pentex ("I bet werewolves exist! Here, take this rocket launching assault rifle with explosive rounds for $84,000 per unit"), and other vampires.

                        Indeed, in my games, Marcus Vitel of the 5th Generation has managed to resist the Beckoning through sheer personal assholery (and the fact the Lasombra antediluvian is really most sincerely dead in my game) to shift his plans from creating a nuclear war to eliminate the Antediluvians to using the War on Terror to eliminate them. In my games, he's responsible for carpet bombing Alamut to the ground and the attack on Vienna (though Tremere helped in the latter). He hasn't killed any Antediluvians but he's weakened every other faction BUT his own. The whole "make thin bloods and control the flow of information to the other factions" plan would fit his style of doing things.

                        Alternatively, it's a Progenitor Lab that did it and the NWO is going to sit on most of Noah's datafiles.
                        Last edited by CTPhipps; 02-13-2019, 04:22 PM.


                        Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                        • BTW, I'm going to use this as a primer for my PCs. Anyone have any suggestions?

                          Originally posted by jamiemalk View Post
                          I've seen a lot of people going on about how they like the Anarchs being a Sect in V5, and i'm just wondering why?

                          They always seemed to be the sullen teenagers of the setting to me, too immature for the Cam, too indecisive for the Sabbat, too afraid to be Autarkis. Essentially aimlessly hanging around the park with their mates, occasionally graffiting things or knocking over bins when "the man" hassles them.

                          The watered down remnants of the Anarch revolt that didn't join either sect.

                          Seriously, what is the appeal there?
                          The Appeal of the Anarchs

                          Well do you want the Anarch answer or the OOC answer?

                          The Anarch answer is because the Anarchs are the protagonist of the game. When Mark Rein Hagen created Vampire: The Masquerade, he was drawing on the favorite RPG zeitgeist of the time in cyberpunk with a twist. Gothic Punk. The idea of the game is that you are a neonate who has been Embraced in the past 50 years, probably the past year if you want to do it "right." It will be, from the moment of your Embrace, almost certainly a living hell.

                          I'm in a hostile environment. I'm totally unprepared. And I'm surrounded by a bunch of guys who probably want to kick my ass. I feel like I'm back in high school.
                          -Johnny Cage


                          Vampire: The Masquerade: Bloodlines is one of the rare things I can point to in vampire fiction because a lot of writers seemed to have missed this. From the moment you have been Embraced, your character has an enemy: the Elders. The Prince does not want you to unlive and will exert at least a minimal amount of effort to have you killed. You are competition for territory, you are competition for vessels, you are a danger to the Masquerade by just being another untrained vampire, and you could potentially be the guy who kills them some day. So it's best to antagonize you until you break one of the Traditions so a Blood Hunt can be called and deal with you. You are trash from the day you were born unless you're lucky to take a Mentor/Malwa or Low Generation.

                          As a Storyteller, I've done the following things to my PCs as the Prince and Sheriff:

                          * Blood Bound and kept a PC's sister as a sex slave ghoul.
                          * Dominating them into frenzying the next time they see their mortal parents.
                          * Tied them up in a basement with a little girl in a corner and no blood.
                          * Sending gunmen to shoot them up in their mortal identity so they have to abandon it.
                          * Inviting them to participate in a "Human Hunt" to horrify their humanity.
                          * Show them a slave auction for vessels (which was actually a present from them)
                          * Order them to kill someone's mortal friend or lover because they revealed the Masquerade, thus giving the PCs an eternal enemy and keeping the Prince's hands clean.
                          * Burning down their mortal business.
                          * Had the PCs befriend a bunch of Thin Bloods and then send down the Sheriff and his Hounds to murder them all for no reason, stuffing them in tires before setting them on fire.

                          The appeal of the Anarchs is the appeal of the Matrix. You have a small group of fellow vampires you can trust and fall back on so that the Prince can't simply send the Sheriff to your haven. A coterie is a matter of survival for younger vampires as the power structure of the Evil CamarillaTM is against you. You're stuck as a bunch of small time hoods in a deeply mobbed up town like it's Grand Theft Auto and they have the police, media, and other vampires in their pocket. If you want to survive, you need to build friends, alliances, and get yourself some weapons.

                          Eventually, in my games, if the PCs are VERY lucky they will be able to overthrow the Prince and not be on the next Prince's shit list.

                          "Quite an experience to live in fear, isn’t it? That’s what it is to be a slave."
                          -Roy Batty


                          However, if you serve the Camarilla then you're a fool. No matter what sort of loyalty you display to the sect, you will only succeed if you betray your friends. The Prince will give you gold, whores, and wealth but at the end of the day, he will always turn on you if it suits his interests. So you need to turn on him first. The Tremere are the only clan that has any actual meritocracy and bootlicking but the only way to make a opening above you in the Pyramid is to kill the guy above you. He knows that too.

                          Mind you, the Sabbat are a joke in my game. They're ISIS and they have no freedom because all of them are Blood Bound cannon fodder for a war against the Camarilla. It's the same shit, different toilet and if you're not a Lasombra Elder or Tzimsice then you're doomed to get eaten by someone's new childe in monomancy after they poison the Vaulderie or sent on a mission to kill Hardestadt with no backup. It's also a note that Anarchs are not GOOD people but the majority of them object to going into a Maternity Ward and eating babies on a dare too. That's Tuesday for the Sabbat. The average Camarilla Elder is Humanity 4, the average Anarch Elder's Humanity is 6. Yes, they steal and feed at will but they at least TRY not to kill indiscriminately and make the world a much worse place.

                          The Anarch is the only way to be free because you can't make it alone in the Kindred world but you can maybe fight for your tiny family and friends.

                          Brian: People, we should be struggling together!
                          PFJ member
                          : [in a headlock] We are!
                          Brian: No, we should be rising up against the common enemy.
                          All: The Judean People's Front?!
                          Brian: No, no, the Romans!


                          Mind you, I've found most PCs are Anarchs but they just don't realize it. A lot of the higher clan people fight against the Prince but never quite join the actual Movement because they don't trust it. Which is right because the thing about the Anarchs is that they are every bit as untrustworthy as other vampires. The Revolution will feed on the Revolution. That doesn't make you less of an Anarch.

                          So why be an Anarch?

                          Because you live in a world of predators and you are not the top of the food chain but a competitor.

                          "Come with me if you want to live."
                          -The Terminator


                          The OOC Answer?

                          The OOC Answer is that it depends greatly on how the Storyteller is presenting the relationship between Elders, Neonates, and the Anarchs vs. the Camarilla. The original game presumed that you were going to be Neonates and angry "Fight the Man" like it was similar to Mage: The Ascension but as we saw with Mage: The Ascension, plenty of people identified with the bad guys the same way that gamers often identify with Warhammer 40K's Imperium or the Galactic Empire. Also, well, the other supernatural factions are kind of assholes.

                          2nd Edition and Revised had the weird idea that the Anarchs and Camarilla were less, "Revolutionaries vs. the Man" and more "Democrats in leather jackets vs. Republicans with fangs." They had the Anarchs side with the Camarilla against the Sabbat so the distinctions between the two sides seemed gradually less and less important. The game also stopped being about a single city and more often about globe-trotting adventures with the PCs very often Elders as we see with the Transylvania Chronicles and Giovanni Chronicles.

                          Perhaps the deathblow to the Anarch Movement was LA BY NIGHT (the supplement, not the awesome web series). The depiction of the Anarchs there was as spoiled children who, after seizing the 2nd largest city in America, proceeded to divide it among a bunch of gangs constantly fighting each other. It was pathetic and made the organization look like a bunch of fools. In CHICAGO BY NIGHT, the Anarchs were half-intellectuals and half thugs with 1920s Socialists, Civil Rights leaders, and a few other geniuses interspersed with the thugs.

                          So, very disappointing.

                          The Movement's depiction in V5 is much more enticing and builds on the work in ANARCHS UNBOUND with the revelation that plenty of Anarchs didn't throw down their colors and surrender at the Treaty of Thorns OR become Sabbat psychopaths. The movement is 800 years old and still has many members fighting the good fight. It also incorporates the Brujah Council, the Anarch Free States, South American Revolutionaries, and the French Revolution. In short, the Movement has gone from being a joke to every bit as successful as the Sabbat ever was.

                          The Sabbat are functionally identical to the Camarilla except maybe a little meaner. The Anarchs, however, are now a thing to keep Kindred Elders up at night.
                          Last edited by CTPhipps; 02-13-2019, 06:15 PM.


                          Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                          • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                            Noah "Flyboy" Grewal

                            Synopsis: Spy for the Second Inquisition and the most powerful Thin Blood in the World.
                            I'm interested in the concept of "always a bigger fish," or predators around that are more deadly and terrible than are the vampires. Humans, organized and armed, are one such predator. I also want to bring in some of the not-vampire monsters from Requiem but that is a different discussion.

                            In the real world, I used to work as a crime beat reporter. One of the lessons I learned was criminals will turn on each other in a heart beat - there is no honor among thieves. This is something all law enforcement officers know, and they work this opportunity well. Law enforcement are often adept at manipulation. So the idea that some vampires "turn state's evidence," or at least snitch on other vampires, is perfectly reasonable. Grewal is a believable character in that sense.

                            My only probably with the SI is trying to work out what they have been doing in the decade sense Vienna and London.

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                            • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                              Note: His stats are very very weird for an ex-Marine as was noted in another thread. Stamina 1, no Brawl, huge muscular build but Strength 2? One might revise this before printing if he's not meant to have been a Marine who has completely let himself go..
                              I can No-Prize this one, since Thin Bloods are deliberately kind of weird and inconsistent in how their powers manifest. He was already in top shape when he was "embraced", but perhaps part of his Thin Blood manifests itself in a lack of the physical stasis that afflicts most vampires. I'm pretty sure "hair and nails still grow" is down somewhere as a possible thing, but poor old Noah can also get out of shape over time even if his appearance doesn't change, and his skills perish over time as a mortal's would without practise.

                              The stats are still a little goofy, he needs some brawl, minimum. He's an ex-marine, and could currently get whooped by a yoga mom with a Tai Bo tape.

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                              • Originally posted by Tubect View Post

                                I can No-Prize this one, since Thin Bloods are deliberately kind of weird and inconsistent in how their powers manifest. He was already in top shape when he was "embraced", but perhaps part of his Thin Blood manifests itself in a lack of the physical stasis that afflicts most vampires. I'm pretty sure "hair and nails still grow" is down somewhere as a possible thing, but poor old Noah can also get out of shape over time even if his appearance doesn't change, and his skills perish over time as a mortal's would without practise.

                                The stats are still a little goofy, he needs some brawl, minimum. He's an ex-marine, and could currently get whooped by a yoga mom with a Tai Bo tape.
                                Yeah, I remember when they did the GI Joe comics revised, they had Bazooka having put on forty pounds.



                                Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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