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  • #61
    Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
    This in particular was a failure of the game, because taking out a few big name Methuselahs doesn't really accomplish this. It's just like the Beckoning. "Lets lower the power in the setting!" doesn't work when all the cool high powered NPCs avoid these things. Basically, there's still too many big named powerful NPCs around for this to have worked.
    I confess, we had an interesting question about it.

    "Could a drone strike kill Kementiri? How about Helena?"

    Because those are the best ways the PCs could think anyone could take out those Methuselahs even if it's not themselves.

    I think part of the issue is the fact the Second Inquisition hasn't been detailed extensively more than anything else. In effect, it is the Vampire Technocracy but the Technocracy was never scary because of HIT Marks and Progenitor monsters but the fact that it controlled the Consensus. If they had written up the Second Inquisition with Men in Black equivalents, Veteran Hunters, and given us a reason why they're immune to most supernatural powers vampires can throw at them as well as the public letting them get away with it then I think it'd be better accepted.

    Weirdly, in my fist V5 game, I used the CDC as the basis for the Second Inquisition rather than intelligence agencies.

    There was a global pandemic and gosh darnit, we have to quarantine, evacuate, and burn down a LOT of buildings dontcha know.
    Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-12-2019, 02:19 AM.


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

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    • #62
      Here are my thoughts on the Second Inquisition:

      1. Government agencies can not be involved. Government agencies getting involved is a complete collapse of the Masquerade and we are not playing VtM anymore. Vampire the Masquerade is not Delta Green where public knowledge of the threat is itself a threat. At most, you can have the X-Files where Agent Mulder is a genuine vampire hunter, but his bosses are puppets of a vampire conspiracy using Mulder to strike at their rivals.
      2. The Vatican also can not be involved, for much the same reason - it still holds a lot of political power and the world will no longer pass for reality.
      3. As such, the core of the Second Inquisition should be formed from militias, minor religious orders, and everything that would work as a compact in Hunter the Vigil.
      4. Vampire threats differ in danger and killability. Ventrue, Tremere, and other social vampires are hardest to discover because they hide behind layers of pawns, but easiest to kill during the day because they lack direct offensive power and defenses. Auspex vampires are the hardest vampires to attack. Tremere, Malkavians, Toreador, etc. They are all precogs who can hear you coming from a kilometer away and wake up when a molecule moves funny in the haven's vicinity. Physical vampires like Brujah and Gangrel are neither hard to discover nor hard to attack but are hard to take down. They move fast, hit like a truck, and sometimes turn into a mist and just fly away.
      There is no good clan to worf without running into a D&D 4e gnome problem. The least bad choice is probably the clan Lasombra. They have centralized gatherings (Amici Noctis), are easily identifiable as vampires (no reflection), and don't have Auspex. And a large number of private yachts suddenly exploding would be much less suspicious than a drone strike on Vienna. While popular, they are the Sabbat, a non-standard PC faction, so you are not annoying the Lasombra Antitribu players, who are probably the majority of the Lasombra players.

      5. It actually doesn't matter how the Second Inquisition takes down Hellena, Ur-Shulgi or Caine himself. This is 100% NPC on NPC action that happens off-screen. They find their haven during the day and shoot five rounds rapid, whatever. What matters is the Second Inquisition as an enemy of the players. And as such, the Second Inquisition needs to be tough, but beatable. What I would do is have the Second Inquisition not as a unified interconnected front wielding vast information on vampires, but as a meme. Like the Axial Age, the Second Inquisition is a phenomenon (and from vampire perspective - a sign of the Gehenna), where people all over the world are starting to get woke to the vampire threat. Sometimes this means an increased activity of neighborhood watch that leaves the vampires half-starved and angry. Other times it means a priest picks up a shotgun and goes on the crusade. Yet other times it means the town hall has suddenly done a review of their old paperwork and tax collectors are drooling. The Second Inquisition is many-headed, shapeless, and most importantly - not talking to or even aware of its many manifestations. So success or failure of the vampire hunters in any given town does not endanger the setting at large. The Second Inquisition is not an organization - it is an ever-widening gap between humanity and the monsters that prey on it.

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      • #63
        I feel that the governments of the world being involved in the Masquerade is a necessity in an age of cellphones and social media. The Second Inquisition crushing the attempts to make the supernatural public is an additional layer of secrecy needed for suspension of disbelief.

        But the real appeal is that player characters are afraid of breaking the Masquerade now.

        Because they will end up dead if they do.

        3. As such, the core of the Second Inquisition should be formed from militias, minor religious orders, and everything that would work as a compact in Hunter the Vigil.
        Isn't the Hunters Hunted II as is?

        5. It actually doesn't matter how the Second Inquisition takes down Hellena, Ur-Shulgi or Caine himself. This is 100% NPC on NPC action that happens off-screen. They find their haven during the day and shoot five rounds rapid, whatever. What matters is the Second Inquisition as an enemy of the players. And as such, the Second Inquisition needs to be tough, but beatable.
        I think it matters a great deal as the players need to understand that it could be the end of all vampires everywhere and that it is not something they can defeat.

        The Second Inquisition is now a permanent part of their lives.

        10 to 100 years from now, they'll have to keep aware of it.
        Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-12-2019, 09:05 AM.


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

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        • #64
          Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
          I feel that the governments of the world being involved in the Masquerade is a necessity in an age of cellphones and social media.
          Only if vampires refuse to adapt. I think one of the bigger failings of V5's Anarchs is that they're still stuck in "rebellion against the Man" mode as a generality, over diving head first into 21st century subversion of government power (because the Camarilla is a government too). The Anarchs should be focused on being the new vanguard of a new Masquerade that can adapt and survive in the rapidly changing technological world of humans, rather than being back to the punks that don't want to abide by Camarilla rule.

          You only need the human governments involved if you continue to believe that vampires need an overarching government of their own. If vampires let go of that, and learn some lessons from all that terrorism we've been talking about? They'd know the surveillance state is still a sieve with so many holes it's laughable to get caught in them if you're flexible.

          It took the combined intelligence resources of multiple countries a year and a half to take down Mohammed Emwazi after he became a major target because of the first Jihadi John video. No magical powers, no fancy technology, no major financial resources or places to flee to... just enough IT smarts to know how he was being tracked, and how to stay ahead of it. The only reason he got caught was because of his wife's Internet presence giving away just enough of his routine to put a hole in his defenses. And he was murdering people and posting the videos of it to the Internet.

          A vampire trying to hide themselves from governments instead of being on YouTube has a vast array of ways to duck the alphabet soup orgs and say hidden... but it takes knowing how.

          The Second Inquisition crushing the attempts to make the supernatural public is an additional layer of secrecy needed for suspension of disbelief.
          And... not one easy to accept. Cross-agency secrecy is pretty much a joke. These groups have enough trouble stopping leaking from inside their own groups let alone getting other people to keep secrets for them.

          But the real appeal is that player characters are afraid of breaking the Masquerade now.

          Because they will end up dead if they do.
          What.... you mean the threat of break the Masquerade is... what it always was?

          Princes always had to the power to kill someone for breaking the Masquerade (or worse), and breaking the Masquerade was always supposed to be a risk of drawing vampire hunters out of the woodwork and to your door.

          So if this is the appeal... it's a shitty appeal because it's just doing what the games already said would happen without it, and now adds all this other stuff on top of that.

          Isn't the Hunters Hunted II as is?
          In Vigil terms, HHII groups are Conspiracies with overt supernatural resources. Compacts are larger scale organized purely human Hunters that have no to minimal supernatural resources at their disposal. Conspiracies get things like Numina to even the odds with supernatural foes. Compacts have to rely on numbers, organization, and creativity. Compacts also tend to be more regional as their limit power makes it hard for them to grow too large or gain too much political power while they're also trying to take down monsters.

          I think it matters a great deal as the players need to understand that it could be the end of all vampires everywhere and that it is not something they can defeat.

          The Second Inquisition is now a permanent part of their lives.

          10 to 100 years from now, they'll have to keep aware of it.
          Why is the SI unbeatable and permanent?

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          • #65
            Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

            Only if vampires refuse to adapt. I think one of the bigger failings of V5's Anarchs is that they're still stuck in "rebellion against the Man" mode as a generality, over diving head first into 21st century subversion of government power (because the Camarilla is a government too). The Anarchs should be focused on being the new vanguard of a new Masquerade that can adapt and survive in the rapidly changing technological world of humans, rather than being back to the punks that don't want to abide by Camarilla rule.
            The Anarchs are an ideology instead of a direct organizaion or perhaps they're the Allies against the Camarilla's Axis. They don't agree on anything other than their right to determination and are more like 15 different organizations if not a hundred. Mind you, anyone who isn't an Anarch is fooling themselves.

            You only need the human governments involved if you continue to believe that vampires need an overarching government of their own. If vampires let go of that, and learn some lessons from all that terrorism we've been talking about? They'd know the surveillance state is still a sieve with so many holes it's laughable to get caught in them if you're flexible.
            Staying constantly on the move and away from the corners of media, power, and wealth is pretty much the antithesis of how most vampires would be able to live. Vampires are nearly biologically designed to be in one specific area long-term.

            A vampire trying to hide themselves from governments instead of being on YouTube has a vast array of ways to duck the alphabet soup orgs and say hidden... but it takes knowing how.
            Which is why I appreciate the Camarilla are going old school analog, Eyes Wide Shut secret invitations and staying off the grid. Their ghouls having all the secret identities and becoming ghosts. It's a nice contrast to the super-techy Anarchs and fits well in theme.

            And... not one easy to accept. Cross-agency secrecy is pretty much a joke. These groups have enough trouble stopping leaking from inside their own groups let alone getting other people to keep secrets for them.
            Yep, which ultimately is a worry that player characters will have in-universe. It also is why you can't just wipe the SI out.

            What.... you mean the threat of break the Masquerade is... what it always was?

            Princes always had to the power to kill someone for breaking the Masquerade (or worse), and breaking the Masquerade was always supposed to be a risk of drawing vampire hunters out of the woodwork and to your door.
            Yep and now it's gone from being a joke with some guys with stakes and mallets to people who can wipe you all out. I feel like they now have a kind of Agent Smith vibe to them.

            So if this is the appeal... it's a shitty appeal because it's just doing what the games already said would happen without it, and now adds all this other stuff on top of that.
            Well disobeying the Prince is the best thing any player character can do. The purpose of any typical coterie is to eventually cut the bastard's head off. Hunters also were treated as a joke in many books but hardened soldiers with military-grade weapons? Not so much.

            Most players were expecting the Frog Brothers, not Agents and SEALS.

            Why is the SI unbeatable and permanent?
            Too many people know about its existence and its information is spread around hundreds of agencies, thousands of people, and in many criss-crossed records. If you shut down the Second Inquisition in one area, it'll just be reformed within X amount of time. You also can't just kill hundreds of government agents without creating bigger problems than you started with. The Camarilla can impede the SI and make them think there's only a handful of vampires left but this is the new reality.

            Being a pest the government deals with either as an existential threat or something that is on their list of things to use/terminate like terrorists.


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

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            • #66
              Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
              The Anarchs are an ideology instead of a direct organizaion or perhaps they're the Allies against the Camarilla's Axis. They don't agree on anything other than their right to determination and are more like 15 different organizations if not a hundred. Mind you, anyone who isn't an Anarch is fooling themselves.
              ...so is the Camarilla? Beyond the basic set of rules each Prince is his own thing, and the higher level structure exists almost entirely in terms of Archons having the biggest dicks to slap down anyone who doesn't respect them. Anarchs aren't really doing anything new with their Barons that the Camarilla isn't already doing.

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              • #67
                Originally posted by Kammerer View Post

                ...so is the Camarilla? Beyond the basic set of rules each Prince is his own thing, and the higher level structure exists almost entirely in terms of Archons having the biggest dicks to slap down anyone who doesn't respect them. Anarchs aren't really doing anything new with their Barons that the Camarilla isn't already doing.
                I think there's significantly more diversity in Anarch organizations than among Princes. Mind you, Anarchs include cults, communist collectives, dictatorships, and democracies now.


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

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                • #68
                  Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                  The Anarchs are an ideology instead of a direct organizaion...
                  And if their ideology remains, "We're going to do the same thing as the Cam, but be better about it," then they're just as fools as anyone else.

                  Staying constantly on the move and away from the corners of media, power, and wealth is pretty much the antithesis of how most vampires would be able to live. Vampires are nearly biologically designed to be in one specific area long-term.
                  I brought up Emwazi for a reason. He was a guy known to anti-terrorist taskforces years before he actually did anything as a possible terrorist in the making. They knew who he was, and where he was. He didn't leave an area ~5 square miles for 2 years and they never even found out where he actually slept most of the time. While he was torturing hostages, filming executions and posting that to the Internet, meeting with his cell to plan terrorism, meeting with his superiors in ISIS, and recruiting people online... all from one neighborhood in one city and all the intelligence agencies knew all of that.

                  And the only thing that brought him down, was that he wanted to spend time with his wife and kids, and his wife wasn't careful enough about her online messages.

                  This was not an example of avoiding media, power, or territory (wealth yes, but that's kinda a moot point for the example). He was part of ISIS's media wing, and a growing player in ISIS because of the effect of being a British Muslim that was radicalized.

                  As paradoxical as it sounds when talking about a terrorist, if it wasn't for his desire to be a decent husband and father, he could have kept that up for years until the main military forces actually pushed into Raqqa.

                  So, no, vampires that put any effort into this are not forced out of modern life to maintain secrecy. All it takes is, again, adapting to the times. They're not trying to pick fights with the US and the UK governments on the Internet.

                  Yep, which ultimately is a worry that player characters will have in-universe. It also is why you can't just wipe the SI out.
                  You can't wipe the SI out because they can't keep a secret?

                  That doesn't make any sense. Why would you let the chance of them leaking you're a vampire hang over you at the risk of destroying them being... revealing your a vampire but getting rid of a military force trying to kill you at the same time.

                  I feel like they now have a kind of Agent Smith vibe to them.
                  If we needed this, we had the Technocracy.

                  Well disobeying the Prince is the best thing any player character can do.
                  Um, not really? Tends to mean you die fast. Subverting the Prince to replace them? Sure, but that takes time, not just being dumb and rebelling.

                  Hunters also were treated as a joke in many books but hardened soldiers with military-grade weapons? Not so much.
                  And we get back to the problem of why "hunters were a joke," is because it isn't a matter of how well armed they are, but how good vampires are at not getting trapped into stand up fights when they have superpower to mind control you with.

                  But then the SI rolls in with, "eh screw you powers," and wins and it's an incoherent mess instead of being actually scary.

                  Being a pest the government deals with either as an existential threat or something that is on their list of things to use/terminate like terrorists.
                  So, basically, plot armor rather than any sort of sensible reason.

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                  • #69
                    I think if you can't see why the Second Inquisition would be a threat with their resources that you're the one misidentifying their benefits. The SI can deal with vampires on the same conspiracy, technology, and financial levels as most others.

                    And yes, they kind of are the Vampire Technocracy.

                    Because the Union makes a good enemy for vampires. It's just that they aren't magical because that's a different gameline.


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

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                    • #70
                      So far the SI's main weapons isn't really 'badass mortals with tech and information' but rather 'off screen author fiat'.

                      It's no wonder people don't buy it.

                      And they don't make any sense. If the masquerade is broken, it should be broken. Donald Trump should be tweeting about his new policy in regards to the 'vampire population'. People eating lunch at mcdonalds should be talking about how they can't pretend it's all just serial killers anymore. The local identified vampire should have crowds of mortally ill people beating down his door to 'make them immortal', but he's not there cause he's cut and run to try and dodge a small train of vampire hunters.The camarilla should be feeling sick to their stomach. None of this "The SI is totally different from before except it's exactly the same as any other wod secret organisation with enormous resources except more vague and ambigious"

                      If they SI went 'vampires are real, now everybody knows it, also we need to murder these people because they're undead terrorists so let's go' then rolled up to the Vienne chantry with a battalion of tanks or whatever heavy military force you'd prefer and then bombarded it until it fell apart I don't think anyone would question why it fell. People might not like the setting and they might nitpick other shit, but at least it'd make sense.

                      Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

                      And we get back to the problem of why "hunters were a joke," is because it isn't a matter of how well armed they are, but how good vampires are at not getting trapped into stand up fights when they have superpower to mind control you with.
                      Rather than being a question of power, I think normal humans aren't that interesting as major characters in the WoD. You have the hidden supernatural world, specifically the vampire corner, and it has factions and history and culture and philosophy and values and tension and conflict to an amazing degree. Then you got mortals which are like normal people, ie not as interesting. The most fun part about Vampire The Masquerade is (fittingly) is the vampires themselves.

                      Also for hunters the avenue of potential conflict is much more straightforward and therefore limited. It's more fun having five hundred different things you can do with other vampires than the five or so things you can do with hunters,.

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                      • #71
                        Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                        And if their ideology remains, "We're going to do the same thing as the Cam, but be better about it," then they're just as fools as anyone else.
                        Like

                        As stated, the Anarchs have a variety of government styles they implement in their territories. In LTSRR, we're going to see a Theocratic Anarch state run by the Ministry in Indianapolis.

                        So, no, vampires that put any effort into this are not forced out of modern life to maintain secrecy. All it takes is, again, adapting to the times. They're not trying to pick fights with the US and the UK governments on the Internet.
                        And there's no reason that they can't do that through ghouls.

                        You can't wipe the SI out because they can't keep a secret?
                        They can keep a secret. They have decided to keep the secret of vampires from the public at large but the agencies themselves are informed of their existence with various levels of misinformation and classification.

                        That doesn't make any sense. Why would you let the chance of them leaking you're a vampire hang over you at the risk of destroying them being... revealing your a vampire but getting rid of a military force trying to kill you at the same time.
                        Because vampires would lose. There's absolutely no way for them to win against the US government, let alone the entirety of the world. In my first V5 game, I stated explictly half of all vampires in the world had been destroyed at the start of the game by the SI and they'd successfully kept the Masquerade from the public as a whole. If it had been broken completely, then it would have been overnight the end of vampires everywhere.

                        If we needed this, we had the Technocracy.
                        The SI is a more grounded version of the Technocracy representing "The Man", Modern Technology, Big Money, and other threats that humans prove can do just as well as vampires.

                        Um, not really? Tends to mean you die fast. Subverting the Prince to replace them? Sure, but that takes time, not just being dumb and rebelling.
                        The game is Punk and that means rebelling.

                        And we get back to the problem of why "hunters were a joke," is because it isn't a matter of how well armed they are, but how good vampires are at not getting trapped into stand up fights when they have superpower to mind control you with.
                        Which is why a lot of SI hunters are immune to mind-control.

                        But then the SI rolls in with, "eh screw you powers," and wins and it's an incoherent mess instead of being actually scary.
                        Vampire powers are not gamebreakers.

                        So, basically, plot armor rather than any sort of sensible reason.
                        That seems like you aren't really willing to put much effort into how technology, money, and secrecy would make the SI the match for nay vampire.


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

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                        • #72
                          Originally posted by CoriolisEffect View Post
                          So far the SI's main weapons isn't really 'badass mortals with tech and information' but rather 'off screen author fiat'.
                          I find it weird how people can come up with nine different ways to have vampires beat the SI but can't understand how the SI can win against vampires despite all of modern technology plus the Society of Leopold and any other allies have they have.

                          It's no wonder people don't buy it.
                          The O.G. Inquisition beat vampires easily and that was before guns existed.

                          And they don't make any sense. If the masquerade is broken, it should be broken. Donald Trump should be tweeting about his new policy in regards to the 'vampire population'. People eating lunch at mcdonalds should be talking about how they can't pretend it's all just serial killers anymore. The local identified vampire should have crowds of mortally ill people beating down his door to 'make them immortal', but he's not there cause he's cut and run to try and dodge a small train of vampire hunters.The camarilla should be feeling sick to their stomach. None of this "The SI is totally different from before except it's exactly the same as any other wod secret organisation with enormous resources except more vague and ambigious"
                          In the TV show Ultraviolet, they talk about why they don't reveal vampires to the world. The statement from Idris Elba being something akin to, "The moment people know about vampires is the end of civilization as we know it. It'll be the rise of a theocracy, people returning to superstition, and an end of normal government because they will either turn to vampires or people they believe can protect them from vampires." It seems a fairly reasonable fear to me and probably the way the world would go.

                          Whoever presses the "End of the Masquerade" button ends human civilization as we know it.

                          If they SI went 'vampires are real, now everybody knows it, also we need to murder these people because they're undead terrorists so let's go' then rolled up to the Vienne chantry with a battalion of tanks or whatever heavy military force you'd prefer and then bombarded it until it fell apart I don't think anyone would question why it fell. People might not like the setting and they might nitpick other shit, but at least it'd make sense.
                          Honestly, I don't see how the Chantry or Alamut would stand up against a typical missile. Vampires are tough, not Superman.

                          Rather than being a question of power, I think normal humans aren't that interesting as major characters in the WoD. You have the hidden supernatural world, specifically the vampire corner, and it has factions and history and culture and philosophy and values and tension and conflict to an amazing degree. Then you got mortals which are like normal people, ie not as interesting. The most fun part about Vampire The Masquerade is (fittingly) is the vampires themselves.
                          I think this was a serious flaw with new editions. Forever Knight was at its best when Nick was solving human crimes as a vampire not when he was fighting other vampires.

                          Also for hunters the avenue of potential conflict is much more straightforward and therefore limited. It's more fun having five hundred different things you can do with other vampires than the five or so things you can do with hunters,.
                          I think Flyboy in CbN shows that's not true.


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

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                          • #73
                            Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

                            I confess, we had an interesting question about it.

                            "Could a drone strike kill Kementiri? How about Helena?"

                            Because those are the best ways the PCs could think anyone could take out those Methuselahs even if it's not themselves.

                            I think part of the issue is the fact the Second Inquisition hasn't been detailed extensively more than anything else. In effect, it is the Vampire Technocracy but the Technocracy was never scary because of HIT Marks and Progenitor monsters but the fact that it controlled the Consensus. If they had written up the Second Inquisition with Men in Black equivalents, Veteran Hunters, and given us a reason why they're immune to most supernatural powers vampires can throw at them as well as the public letting them get away with it then I think it'd be better accepted.

                            Weirdly, in my fist V5 game, I used the CDC as the basis for the Second Inquisition rather than intelligence agencies.

                            There was a global pandemic and gosh darnit, we have to quarantine, evacuate, and burn down a LOT of buildings dontcha know.

                            SI + Ferox = there is literally nothing that systemically can withstand the SI firepower during daylight combined with Ferox's level in faith.

                            - Saga

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                            • #74
                              Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                              The game is Punk and that means rebelling.
                              This seems to be a very poor grasp of what Punk is supposed to mean as an aesthetic as well as forgetting that it's only half Punk.

                              The Punk side of the game is the draw to fight the oppressive power structures diminishing everyone.

                              The Gothic side of the game is the corruption of idealists as today's tyrants were yesterday's rebels, and today's rebels are simply repeating the mistakes of the past because they rebel against the surface problems instead of the dark beating heart of the WoD.

                              The Anarchs can try all the different modes of government they want, but they're fools because they fail to realize the which government style vampires are using isn't the problem. Some might make their little corner of the world a less horrible place, but many objectively do the exact opposite.

                              That seems like you aren't really willing to put much effort into how technology, money, and secrecy would make the SI the match for nay vampire.
                              Not really? In fact it seems rather the opposite. Every time I point out how incoherent the SI is as a setting element as mortals with technology, money, and secrecy as their weapons, you response with things like "well, the SI has the ability to make themselves immune to mind-whammy powers." That's not technology, money, or secrecy, it's magic. And once the SI is a supernatural faction in supernatural wars, it undermines anything outside of the very specific narrative of "elders scheming backfires," but we didn't need a whole new supernatural faction to do that... the game has that happen all the time without the SI.

                              ----------------

                              And to get back to the point of the thread a bit?

                              Here's a huge problem with Vienna:

                              It happened 11 years ago.

                              And I don't just mean in relation to things like the technology advancing, or the name of who got framed.

                              The SI's biggest moment happened off-screen, in the past.

                              Yet again, the VtM metaplot forgot to actually leave a place for the PCs to matter. Because the SI was a plot device to shake things up, it was kept away from players being able to notice it coming and prevent it, to throw their own schemes into the mix, or impact how the SI manifested and manifests later.

                              Vienna (and London) should happen in a year or two. If V5 was set with the SI as a looming disaster, close enough that it's too late to stop it from happening (but not too late to do something about mitigating the damage or trying to take advantage of it), most of the setting elements can remain intact as elders jockey for their position to weather the incoming storm, plus the Beckoning monkey wrenching things further. Then the SI can be so much more amorphous and flexible for actual use in play. How bad the impact of the SI wouldn't be tied up in events already come and gone, so the SI can be used for each story as the table sees fit without having to address the inconsistencies having the SI being around for a decade introduced.

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                              • #75
                                No, I'm saying the Second Inquisition has some magical resources thanks to the Society of Leopold. The majority of their advantages are technological, though.

                                Yet again, the VtM metaplot forgot to actually leave a place for the PCs to matter. Because the SI was a plot device to shake things up, it was kept away from players being able to notice it coming and prevent it, to throw their own schemes into the mix, or impact how the SI manifested and manifests later.
                                A couple of points.

                                1. The Fall of London is coming so the PCs *WILL* be at ground zero for London.

                                2. If they could avert the events of the Council of Seven/Tremere's destruction then the changes to the Tremere that are central to their new role wouldn't happen.

                                Part of what makes V:TM metaplot so great is events happen around the PCs.
                                Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-13-2019, 06:20 AM.


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

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