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[WIR] Beckett's Jyhad Diary - The Big book of Metaplot

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  • I'm running late for work and so will get back to this later. But for the moment, on page 266, Beckett writes "...except maybe for Anastasia (put a pin in that, we’ll come back to it)..." He never mentions her again.

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    • Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post
      I'm running late for work and so will get back to this later. But for the moment, on page 266, Beckett writes "...except maybe for Anastasia (put a pin in that, we’ll come back to it)..." He never mentions her again.
      I think that was just a bit of historical in-jokery.

      All conspiracy theories in the World of Darkness are true after all. Don't ask what goes on in Giovanni pizza joints.


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

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      • Chapter Seventeen: The Fall of the House

        Beckett heads back from Russia toward Maria Sandoval's compound in Mexico City. Maria then sends him to go visit one of the Blood Brothers, which leads him to be captured by Doctor Varona. Honestly, this one is on Beckett rather than Lucita's kid sister. If you trust any member of the Sabbat, you're making a mistake--particularly a Lasombra Elder.

        The Blood Brothers are, bluntly, one of those concepts that exists out of the Monstrous Manual. However, Doctor Varona is trying to do rebuild the Blood Brothers and make sure they can reproduce the old-fashioned way rather than being reliant on the Spellbinders. Beckett manages to escape with a missing arm and a missing leg.

        Beckett then goes with Okulus to visit the headquarters of the now-destroyed Tremere Antitribu. Beckett is surprised when he finds a modernized Server Farm in the middle of what is basically a miniature House Ceoris in Mexico.

        This is one of those moments when as a historian you're confused because it's described as a converted Aztec temple. Why? Aztec temples don't have an interior. Just like the Mayan temples that didn't have an interior in Dialberie: Mexico.

        A part of me wants to think that the Aztec temple is completely new and Goratrix got cheated for millions by local builders.
        A group called House Nagoma gave Beckett a pendant and bone ring to protect him from the kind of impressive wards a 4th generation Tremere is capable of producing. I don't know who the Nagoma are but Anatole is impressed enough to comment on it in his notes.

        Basically, Beckett and Okulus loot the place for as much as they can, including witnessing Tremere (in Goratrix's body) eradicate the Tremere Antitribu and a third eye open on his forehead. He also gets a copy of the Book of the Grave War and some other notable occult tomes. The big ones are The History of House Goratrix which Beckett describes as similar to Mein Kampf and says everything you need to know about Goratrix. Also, The True Way to Golconda by the Master of Ravens that will be a big thing later on. I'm also amused that the Master of Ravens produces illuminated manuscript brochures.

        Aisling Sturbridge believes this "Golconda Nonsense." is possibly what's responsible for Carna rebelling against the system. I have to wonder about her loyalty because you'd think someone who was sent into a suicide mission of serving in the New York chantries would have a bit more understanding. Beckett then journeys to Hunendora for some more information from Albertus Magnus, a descendant of Critias. He also has a series of visions that both reference the Lair of the Hidden as well as the upcoming stuff about the Master of Ravens. Mahtiel gives Beckett a bunch of information that is almost certainly completely over his head.

        Beckett heads to Hong Kong and ends up meeting with my long-time favorite character Karl Schrekt. Karl is refreshingly direct and I get the impression Beckett doesn't believe a word the man says because he spills literally hundreds of Major Boon-level secrets in a few conversation minutes. Basically, his suspicion that Saulot has taken over Tremere's body and Tremere in Goratrix's body.

        Then Beckett steals a Asian Salubri named Tsang and interrogates him. Well, technically Fatima steals him and leaves a hilarious note about it. I love how it's Beckett being a duplicitous fuck here. Tsang more or less just says Saulot is a bastard, he's enslaved to him, and the world is doomed.

        Then someone, presumably Schrekt, smashes in to get at him.

        Adventures

        Lots and lots of Saulot information and the option of Tremere Antitribu to survive. Oh and you can go work for Karl, the only man to ever diablerize a Lupine.

        Thoughts

        I'll have a lot of thoughts in my notes. This is an okay chapter and deals with the "Vienna Knot" that I have strong opinions on. Basically, I feel like the whole Saulot/Tremere/Goratrix/Kupala/Etrius/Tzimisce/Worm storyline was a Chris Claremont sort of plot that gradually consumed much of the latter half of Revised until Gehenna sorted it out. It's a plotline that gradually got more and more complicated and weird before bleeding out over from the Transylvania Chronicles, New York By Night, occupying a big chunk of the Gehenna sourcebook and other matters.



        "It's all connected!"

        All of this stems from the idea that Saulot is actually an asshole, Golconda is a lie, and like 5 or 6 different masterminds are playing the long game. Which, fine, that's the Jyhad but it's WEIRD connections.

        I don't think there's any way of salvaging this Doctor Doom/Red Skull/Captain America is a Skrull/Magneto/Thanos plotline and I think the best thing V5 could do with it is bury the Tremere Antediluvian underneath the ruins of Vienna.

        Too harsh?
        Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-03-2019, 07:16 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 CTPhipps View Post
          Well, technically Fatima steals him and leaves a hilarious note about it.
          It was Talley. Сompare handwriting and signature with Talley note from "The Dead Walk"

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          • Chapter Seventeen: The Fall of the House

            These will be LONG notes by comparison because this is a bunch of stuff I have long opinions on.

            1. Tremere Antitribu: I remember when the Tremere Antitribu were (seemingly) arbitrarily destroyed by the people at White Wolf. To this day, it remains one of the more inexplicable decisions made in the game. I guess it was to make room for the Salubri Antitribu but it just seemed thrown in. Also, strange was the fact when fans confronted the developers, there was a bit of defensiveness. I don't remember which book had the sidebar but it was like, "The Tremere Antitribu are destroyed in canon and you can have your character as a survivor but maybe you're not ready for MATURE roleplaying if you want them to survive." It was weirdly condescending about a decision that came out of nowhere.

            I think the backlash from the mass destruction of the Tremere Antitribu is why the destruction of the Ravnos resulted in a substantial number of survivors so your character could be one of the 200 or so members left. Even so, there were other weird decisions that only affected NPCs because I don't think anyone had any characters. Like the random mass murder of all male Daughters of Cacophany that affected my unplayed PC based on Pavoratti.

            In any case, this book clarifies that there were some Tremere Antitribu who survived the event and apparently some that Goratrix/Tremere spared. It's doubly relevant because House Goratrix is a thing that survives into V5. I'm interested in how that group will go on and whether it'll be its own thing separate from the Sabbat now because I can't imagine Tremere having much use for the new monstrous Sabbat and when you're Tremere you don't need to have the Sword of Caine. It could very well be the Ordo Dracul equivalent when it's detailed if he opens it up to non-Tremere.

            2. Goratrix/Tremere relationship: Oh and Tremere/Goratrix are confirmed as lovers here. Like Divis Mal, Tremere being gay changes nothing but is interesting. Goratrix is bisexual at least, though, because one minor element of his characterization was that prior to having his phallus severed for the sanctifying of Ceoris (there's a rare sentence) he was a compulsive womanizer. He regrew it but it never quite worked right again. I feel sad that I know that.

            3. I feel like Karl Schrekt is the best thing to come out of Berlin by Night because a Puritan Witch Hunter turned vampire (i.e. Soloman Kane) like a frigging Warhammer Fantasy character (R.I.P. World of Sigmar) is an amazing concept for a vampire. He's a bit overpowered but liek Madame Guile, he's a great character to use when you want to impress Justicars are not to be fucked with. I'm honestly surprised he hasn't been Beckoned but my choice is to believe the Antediluvians are afraid of him like Chuck Norris.

            He also has some silly elements like the fact he diablerized a Lupine but I choose to believe, this means he's reclaimed the blood of an Abomination. One on the Red List, which is against the law of the Camarilla but they let him get away with it. Why?

            Because he is...the most interesting vampire in the world.



            "Stay thirsty, my fellow Warlocks."

            4. I hate Evil Saulot and the falsehood of Golconda. Evil Saulot is something that the gameline tried to sell as something shocking and twisting but its twist is, "He's just like the other Antediluvians! He's a meanie!" This is one of those things that I feel like was sold hard and it's not something that really is all that interesting. I think part of is the Antediluvians aren't really characters but "forces" in the world anyway. It doesn't help that the whole premise is not only is Evil Saulot evil but he has to be the absolute EVILEST of all Antediluvians. He's the Demon Emperor of the universe! He terrifies the Wan Kuei/Kuei-Jin! He sired the Baali! It's all part of his evil plan! Ho ho ho!

            Plus Golconda is already treated as almost impossible to get that it might as well not be in the game, I'm of the mind we need to reverse it and make playable Golconda and it less overtly superpowered. So, making it fake just is kicking the personal horror element as you need an escape to make damnation interesting.

            5. I'm pretty sure most of us agree that V5 Tremere probably lowered the defenses of the Vienna Chantry to let the Second Inquisition free. Much the same as we all think the Technocracy is lending aid to the Second Inquisition (they have a whole lot of disposable soulless cloned soldiers after all). I do like Karl's brass balls that when confronted with the idea there's a 3rd generation giant worm monster, that his first instinct is to charge it.

            Dude was the 30 Years War version of Cristof. I wonder who'd win in a fistfight during their mortal days: him or Gustavus Adolphus.

            6. The Blood Brothers are a bloodline that don't really have much use as PCs because the whole point is that you destroy your individuality in order to become a blob monster. I'm genuinely not sure what the point of that is other than to be a monster for the PCs to destroy. Which is, of course, what they were but I think you can potentially do more with them. A gestalt Borg-like Kindred could be another new part of the "alien and terrifying" Sabbat.

            Weirdly, I'm thinking of the Omar from Deus Ex 2. They were a gestalt bunch of assholes who gave up their individuality then became arms dealers.
            Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-03-2019, 07:40 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 Jargal View Post

              It was Talley. Сompare handwriting and signature with Talley note from "The Dead Walk"
              Weird, because it was signed "F."


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              • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                Weird, because it was signed "F."
                It is "T" with hyphen, but if I hadn’t read the google-files during the kickstarter, I would also have thought that this is F.

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                • Originally posted by Jargal View Post

                  It is "T" with hyphen, but if I hadn’t read the google-files during the kickstarter, I would also have thought that this is F.
                  Thanks for the clarification. It did seem out of character for her.


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                  • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                    Thanks for the clarification.
                    These google-files make the reading of handwriting a lot easier because they have marks like: "[below text is a letter in talley’s handwriting]" :-)

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                    • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

                      Weird, because it was signed "F."
                      Ignore. My comment is redundant


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                      • Originally posted by The Gentleman Gamer View Post

                        Ignore. My comment is redundant
                        Blame my poor reading comprehension skills.


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                        • I once tried to do Karl Schrekt in a German accent for my PCs and he became inexplicably Scottish.

                          So I rolled with it.

                          Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-03-2019, 08:08 AM.


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                          • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

                            4. I hate Evil Saulot and the falsehood of Golconda.
                            This is probably horses for courses but I loved that reveal at the end of TCIII and the realisation that Saulot was playing a.long, long game.

                            Except he may not be as it's quite possible that it's his Po' driving all this forward and that pure, holy Saulot may still exist, maybe, possibly.

                            Though I admit this shocking twist makes more sense as part of Reviseds push to make all Vampires bastards. Compare and contrast a Revised City Book, where most if not all the NPCs are morally compromised and part of the Jyhad compared to Chicago 1st Edition where you have guys like Sir and Hanks Cave basically hanging out at Humanity 7 and being regular Joe's.

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                            • Originally posted by Zorin001 View Post

                              This is probably horses for courses but I loved that reveal at the end of TCIII and the realisation that Saulot was playing a.long, long game.

                              Except he may not be as it's quite possible that it's his Po' driving all this forward and that pure, holy Saulot may still exist, maybe, possibly.

                              Though I admit this shocking twist makes more sense as part of Reviseds push to make all Vampires bastards. Compare and contrast a Revised City Book, where most if not all the NPCs are morally compromised and part of the Jyhad compared to Chicago 1st Edition where you have guys like Sir and Hanks Cave basically hanging out at Humanity 7 and being regular Joe's.
                              I think it really depends a lot on how you approach the game and the "point" of V:TM. You can really play vampire any which way you want. Beckett's Jyhad Diary is Indiana Jones w/ the occult and only needs a few more Nazis to fight to be perfect. The Clan Novels were essentially big epic urban fantasy monster brawl w/ a dash of politics. There's also the Interview with a Vampire style, the Angel style, and the "I'm a Sabbat and this is EXTREEMMMME! Look how evil and dark I am!" I actually am not being sarcastic since a lot of people playing "monsters" is the appeal of the game and it's not my place to say how they should play the game.

                              Whatever is fun for you. It is my job as the ST to deliver.

                              Indeed, I recommend people check out the Caffeinated Conquest's "The Sacrifice" where they take the serious personal horror and gritty story of THE SACRIFICE and make it f***ing ridiculous.

                              And it's awesome. A Gargoyle, a Samurai Toreador, and more.



                              What I tend to favor, though?

                              What is *MY* Vampire: The Masquerade?

                              For me, the game is about the uphill struggle after the downward slide. The game is about being a monster and everything being stacked against you to try to not be a completely shitty person (and by that I mean a f***ing serial killer) but your character tries not to to be one. That means trying not to kill, killing only complete assholes, doing good to try to atone for the evil deeds you did, and attempting to reign in your beast as well as feed yourself semi-ethically. The big difference between this and say, Forever Knight, being that you are expected to fail along the way. I often use alcoholism and addiction metaphors and coming from a family with a lot of that -- I know how to mine both.

                              The moment a vampire essentially becomes like Son or even your typical Sabbat is when the characters become uninteresting to me. Even Lodin and Jackson, at least the way I run them, have ways of justifying what they are and that's the point of the game -- finding reasons to continue existing if you do care about the people you eat. I actually encourage my Players to make high humanity and "good" characters at the start--because that gives a much cooler arc for them as they fall, fail, compromise, and fuck up.

                              *pause*

                              And I freely admit I have adventures where the PCs have Tremere kill Ur-Shulgi, have Sullivan Dane kill Tiamat by allowing himself to be fed on, and kill a bunch of demons because I'm not always good at the above.
                              Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-03-2019, 09:11 AM.


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                              • Worth mentioning of course that Saulot is also angelic and pure Saulot in this book. Choose your own adventure.


                                Matthew Dawkins
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