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  • Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post
    Why pitch a fit over just one part?
    Ah the most consistent things in criticism inclined V5 discussions: using ad hominem tactics against people with criticisms of V5 rather than either addressing them or acknowledging them as valid.

    But hell why not:

    "Why are you complaining about the SI but not X?" is a bullshit argument because the topic is the SI attack on Vienna, not X.

    Additionally, I play a game called "Vampire" because I want to play vampires. My suspension for disbelief is much greater for things that facilitate playing vampires, than setting elements that limit my ability to play vampires. This isn't hypocrisy, this is trying to enjoy the premise of the game.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
      I agree but I think part of the issue here is that clearly different people have different ideas how the WOD work. Mine is a dark and Gothic exaggerated wold.
      And then you have a worldwide conspiracy of thousands of James Bond-level agents, who for some strange reason have not yet eradicated crime and terrorism despite the fact that this has been their task for many decades.

      Comment


      • For me, the bigger issues of the SI are not that the concept is bad or athematic but that it just isn't presented very well.

        1:] It relies a bit too much on real-world organizations. The SAD works because it's the FBI but FBI adjacent and not an actual part of the FBI. Fictional agencies exist so you don't have to deal with
        the RL. Firstlight is better than the real thing because you don't have to wonder how X does Y when you can define those terms itself.

        It's why I'm fond of Task Force: Valkyrie.

        2:] Its depersonalized. We don't have any NPCs to say who the SI are, what they do, or how they do it. Saying it was headed by William Shepard from Baptism by Fire or some of the NPCs from Project: Twilight would at least give us a sense of who they are.

        3:] We're not really familiar with its SOP. Do they just send in their troops or drones like its a fascist police state or burn down apartment buildings? What?

        4:] The United States is not a magical piggy bank, however much you can hide in black ops. A war against vampires would be incredibly costly and people would wonder why 700 or so US soldiers were killed outside of Afghanistan, Syria, and more. Not to mention where these massive amounts of cash and weapons are going.

        5:] The only way to keep a secret between 3 people is if 2 of them are dead. How exactly are people not talking about vampirism to the armed forces, police, and more?

        6:] What do the SI think of other supernaturals? Surely if they are possessed of vast amounts of information about the supernatural and the databases of the undead.

        7:] How are other supernatural factions reacting and/or lending their aid.

        The thing is, these are all things that make it intriguing and require answers. Certainly, they're every bit as interesting as the questions for how vampires themselves live in the modern world. The least interesting, laziest response to the above is, "It doesn't work."


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

        Comment


        • Originally posted by Jargal View Post
          And then you have a worldwide conspiracy of thousands of James Bond-level agents, who for some strange reason have not yet eradicated crime and terrorism despite the fact that this has been their task for many decades.
          I've run and participated in three V5 games so far and the SI is something that has been in the background of all three. The information for the STs was limited so sometimes we went a bit more in each direction but here is how it went.

          Campaign 1#

          1:] The SI has wiped out half of all vampires globally: The SI is an unstoppable juggernaut that has left whole cities wiped clean of Kindred. It's the movement of a hippopotamus that basically became roused by the stupidity of Kindred and then crushed them an insect. Vampires moved to "safe" cities like Chicago and acted as refugees in many places while others went to ground (sometimes literally). The existence of the SI served as a warning that vampires were no longer evolved enough to compete in the Modern World and were anachronisms that were fucked up. It as also dystopian with the implications it might purge anyone with any trace of vampire DNA, herds, and more. The Masquerade was holding but not very well and there was an abiding sense of, "we're all joking about vampires but not everyone is laughing." I had the cover story being that an epidemic of "infectious porphyrria" was riddling the country and resulting in thousands of homes having to be burned. I STed this one and Marcus Vitel was explictly one of the heads of the organization, a vampire ironically warring on other vampires.

          I ended the campaign with thousands of government agents worldwide having their mind-wiped of vampiredom and it simply, ending, as a sign the Antediluvians found it annoying--showing how helpless humanity truly was.

          Campaign 2#

          2:] The Hammer falls: The game where I'm a player has the Second Inquisition stumbling around until the player character's city is hit simultaneously with dozens of havens burned down across the city but not including the very-very rich vampires, the Nosferatu, or the player characters themselves. We go from Revised to V5 as a story point. Almost immediately, the player characters have ghouls and agents working inside it as well as the incorporation of the Technocratic Union. The SI is thoroughly infiltrated and manipulated after a year's time but they hit hard and even the player characters gave up other vampires to it because, well, they're assholes. The implications being that it will collapse from the inside pretty soon because that's what vampires do but it's a wave that will still crash first.

          Campaign 3#

          3:] Just another threat: This is one I'm doing for my current campaign where the SI got lucky in its opening salvos but has mostly just been wiping out large packs of Sabbat, Anarchs, and expendable Camarlla. The SI are dangerous, yes, but the Camarilla is already ahead of them as are the other clans. I imply heavily that the only reason the Vienna Chantry and Mausoleum fell is because ancient vampires wanted them to be. They're not a existential threat but someone vampires can't bring themselves to care about save as tools.


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

          Comment


          • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
            The thing is, these are all things that make it intriguing and require answers. Certainly, they're every bit as interesting as the questions for how vampires themselves live in the modern world. The least interesting, laziest response to the above is, "It doesn't work."
            And yet, we kept getting told that the answer is effectively "it doesn't work" because the SI can't hold itself together after they think they've done enough damage; except for the keeping it all secret even after everyone goes back to what they were doing before with maybe new monitoring protocols.

            And the problem is that you might want to know the answers to those questions because you find them intriguing. For some of us, those answers are the difference between the SI making any sense as part of the setting, or just being a giant gaping source of setting altering plot holes. Asserting that you find something interesting/etc. therefore complaints about it aren't important isn't exactly useful.

            I at least, don't want to play VtM to play Dracula vs. James Bond, or Ultraviolet, or Night's Black Agents, or whatever. I want to play VtM to play the game VtM sells itself as. Any new addition to the game has to be convincing to me that it will add to my VtM experience rather than turn it into something else, or detract from it. The SI as written in the books (yes, I've read V5, Cam, and Anarchs even if I don't own them so I can't cite things and have to do a lot from memory or trying to double check things online without the texts themselves) didn't sell me on an expanded/better/etc. version of VtM. My impressions are that it was a blunt instrument to reshape the setting that wasn't given a strong consideration to continuity, narrative cohesion, or versimmilitude to the real world elements it incorporates. The Vienna Chantry attack pretty much exemplifies the problem (though Berlin, Paris, and London aren't much better) - esp. since there's even more stuff in the new edition that's also pushing the setting in various directions - that the SI pulls the game away from playing VtM and towards playing something else. I own lots of other something else to play, with systems I like more than V20 or V5.

            I agree that the SI is on some level both a workable concept, and a thematic thing for VtM. But for me it's not just presentation, but execution that has made it something I don't want to know more about beyond how to possible play in the V5 setting while also scrapping it. Maybe the SI book can redeem it for me, maybe it can't, but it's the job of the authors working on the book to sell me on this concept, not for me to buy it.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

              I think that mind-control isn't really useful once you have an institution know about the Masquerade. If Dave starts acting weird then Bob can report him.
              If you used Rationalize on Dave(mere Level 4 power), or just Presence, Dave doesn't act weird. And if Bob start suspecting something you just have to enter his home with obfuscate and use Dominate 3 to make him forget. Unless we assume that every-day-Bob-and-Dave have the same security detail of the President of the United States.

              Also, Washington D.C. and America's intelligence agencies are under the purview of first Vykos (who doesn't care because he's possessed by the Dracon then not) and then Marcus Vitel (who wants to trigger the vampire apocalypse).
              No source ever states that Vykos took control of the Agencies. And the fact that the Sabbat was not able to eradicate the Tremere (who through Dorfman controlled most of the politics of Washington after Vitel) would suggest otherwise.
              As of Marcus Vitel, he never had an hand on Intelligences agency, they were declared verboten by the Justicars, just as the Congress of the United States. These institutions were of the Camarilla as whole. The closest thing Marcus had in his pocket was some influence in the Department of Defense, through Karina Dobbson.

              Basically, it implies a very unified and powerful Camarilla which has never existed as Princes project their power locally not internationally.
              And that is why the Camarilla is not made just of Princes (like Requiem) but also made of Archons and Justicars and Clan structures that are not local. The Ventrue operates through the Strategoi who controls entire regions. The Tremere have 7 Pontifex for each part of the world and several Lords for the smaller region, and they operate on a national level. The Toreador Guilds are regional institutions. The Brujah also had several institutions that were not local but global (The Brujah Council in Russia for example). The Camarilla has always been an international power player and made quite the effort through Conclaves to coordinate in a globale or at least regional scale, that's one the big differences with Requiem and its Invictus.

              Again, Washington D.C. hasn't been Camarilla territory since 1999. Even then it belonged to Marcus Vitel.
              But Vitel didn't had authority over these institutions, and nowhere it is said that the Sabbat took control of the Congress or the CIA.

              Also, this is a very 1st Edition view of the institutions when vampires controlled everything.
              Mmmh nope. Project Twilight is 2nd edition (1995), and there are no sources in Revised that have overwritten it.



              The Technocracy wants the destruction of all Reality Deviants
              Maybe in 2nd edition. The extermination of the Reality Deviants is quite low on the priority list after the Pogrom has been called off.

              Besides this a position that changes a lot between the Convention, and as of Revised Convention Book the Vampire are very very low on the priority scale of the leaders of the Union (NWO and Syndicate).

              This is what the leaders of the Union thinks about Vampires in 2011

              Syndicate
              Vampires
              Vampires are interesting case studies. On one hand,
              they represent functioning anachronism in a microcosm:
              their secret society is based on feudalism, while they
              interact with our modern economy. It’s a stable system,
              one that makes dealing with vampires relatively easy as
              long as their “Masquerade” is not threatened. On the
              other hand, some of their longer-lived ilk have entrenched themselves in Consensual economy. Honestly, it’s hard not to respect the power that comes from being able to invest
              in an institution for decades or even centuries — though don’t mistake that respect for vampiric reverence overall.
              With those Reality Deviants, we can strike peaceful
              accords. Money is, after all, the lingua franca of society,
              and even vampires can value peace and profitable
              business.
              With the younger or more rebellious of their
              kind, though, that’s best left to other Conventions to
              exterminate. Not that we can’t, but our Enforcers are
              better served protecting the Bottom Line, and there are
              a bunch of overzealous Progenitors who would be happy
              to slaughter brutish leeches.

              NWO

              Vampires

              The rumormongering among the vampires of an end
              of days, of a time when their legends rise up, has come and
              passed without incident. To be honest, that comes as a bit
              of a surprise, as the Statisticians calculated catastrophe in
              line with their prophecies.
              There is no open hostility between vampires and the
              Technocracy. They are content to keep to their “Masquerade,”
              and we are content to let them. Given our manpower issues,
              we’re thankful not to have to police two different groups of
              Reality Deviants that wish to work in the open.

              Recently, the Collegia have settled the matter of Clan
              Tremere, vampires who work some form of blood magic.
              While there is still debate over theory regarding why their
              magic does not violate the stability of reality (most likely
              due to humanity’s latent belief in vampires, reinforced
              by the surge of vampires in popular media), the fact that
              it doesn’t makes the debate over reasons a moot point.
              As a threat, they have been downgraded as not worth the
              additional manpower, since they respect the Masquerade
              and do not risk Sleeper exposure.

              The Sabbat — a faction of vampires that does not
              concern itself with secrecy — is a potential thorn in our side,
              however. For now, the Sabbat vampires’ struggle with the
              other vampire factions is a self-policing measure with which
              we’re satisfied. Still, we keep tabs on the sect’s movements,
              so as to feed that information to... relevant parties.




              So yeah we could decide that the Technocracy decided to purge the Vampires. But it goes against all the previous established material we have.

              and found out in 2004 that they are a greater threat than the Nephandi.
              I have no recollection of such a thing. What's the source?



              And the Technocracy did lose the Ascension War according to Revised. Apathy won.
              Ehm that's a gross oversimplification. The Ascension War was won by the Technocracy with the fall of Doissetep and the raid on Concordia. The matter with apathy is completely different and is a problem showed in the introduction of the Revised edition. Apathy doesn't mean that the Technocracy lost the Ascension War, it just means that the Ascension War result is less important thatn previously tought.
              Besides as of Revised Convention Books (2011) the war is over and won and actually apathy is not a terrible problem, you will read nowhere in these books that the Union lost the war, it simply has other problems, much more focused on the future of the Union and the internal strife between the Syndicate and the NWO.



              The Technothaumaturgists were purged from the Tremere according to the Anarchs Unbound book.
              Actually they were not purged, they just left the Tremere and joined the Anarchs, so they are still around and they still can do their things.



              There's also psychic powers, Orpheus tools, hedge magic,
              Which are all incredibly ineffective compared with Disciplines.



              Blood Sorcery is also exclusive to the Tremere who had their own problems BEFORE Vienna.
              Thaumaturgy is common among Tremere, Assamites and Setites. And if we mean Blood Sorcery as Blood Sorcery, and not just Thaumaturgy, than is well known also by Samedi, Nagaraja, Giovanni, Tzimisce,Lasombra, Danava and so on.


              Besides Thaumaturgy is not that rare among elders, or at least not as rare as it is among younger vampires. If you take Children of the Nights, out of 61 characters 17 have Thaumaturgy and only two of them are Tremere.
              And if we take in account Blood Sorcery in general the numbers grows to 22. Out of 61 characters, one third know some form of Blood Sorcery.

              And before V5 the Clan Tremere was the strongest of the Clan. Their problems were such only if you were a member of the Inner Council and knew what was happening with the Worm, but for the rest of the Clan there were no problem in sight.
              Last edited by Undead rabbit; 08-14-2019, 05:20 PM.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

                And yet, we kept getting told that the answer is effectively "it doesn't work" because the SI can't hold itself together after they think they've done enough damage; except for the keeping it all secret even after everyone goes back to what they were doing before with maybe new monitoring protocols.
                No, that's working narratively.

                In-universe, the SI falling apart is understandable after the weight of their victories, losses, and a lengthy (already) war. It's not anywhere near close to collapsing and could regain their position but its to prevent them from being invincible.

                It's like the Sabbat, the Sabbat is a mess internally and eventually did collapse. The SI isn't anywhere near there yet.

                And the problem is that you might want to know the answers to those questions because you find them intriguing. For some of us, those answers are the difference between the SI making any sense as part of the setting, or just being a giant gaping source of setting altering plot holes. Asserting that you find something interesting/etc. therefore complaints about it aren't important isn't exactly useful.
                Yes, the information in THE CAMARILLA guide should have been in the corebook.

                I at least, don't want to play VtM to play Dracula vs. James Bond, or Ultraviolet, or Night's Black Agents, or whatever. I want to play VtM to play the game VtM sells itself as.
                Van Helsing was in Dracula.

                The Frog Brothers were in Near-Dark.

                Hunters are an intristic part of Vampire: The Masquerade. That's the confusion I'm getting. Did Hunters just not show up very often in people's games? They were a regular constant feature in my games.

                Vampire vs. vampire conflict can only go so far.

                Any new addition to the game has to be convincing to me that it will add to my VtM experience rather than turn it into something else, or detract from it. The SI as written in the books (yes, I've read V5, Cam, and Anarchs even if I don't own them so I can't cite things and have to do a lot from memory or trying to double check things online without the texts themselves) didn't sell me on an expanded/better/etc. version of VtM. My impressions are that it was a blunt instrument to reshape the setting that wasn't given a strong consideration to continuity, narrative cohesion, or versimmilitude to the real world elements it incorporates. The Vienna Chantry attack pretty much exemplifies the problem (though Berlin, Paris, and London aren't much better) - esp. since there's even more stuff in the new edition that's also pushing the setting in various directions - that the SI pulls the game away from playing VtM and towards playing something else. I own lots of other something else to play, with systems I like more than V20 or V5.
                What do you think, thematically, the SI takes away from vampire?

                I agree that the SI is on some level both a workable concept, and a thematic thing for VtM. But for me it's not just presentation, but execution that has made it something I don't want to know more about beyond how to possible play in the V5 setting while also scrapping it. Maybe the SI book can redeem it for me, maybe it can't, but it's the job of the authors working on the book to sell me on this concept, not for me to buy it.
                I agree, it needs revisioning but I liked its presence as depicted in CHICAGO BY NIGHT where there's agents monitoring the Kindred of Chicago, a Blacksite in the area, and an actual Kindred sleeper agent.

                It doesn't overwhelm the setting but makes it a plot hammer the ST can bring down.


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

                Comment


                • I have no recollection of such a thing. What's the source?
                  The Technocracy has implemented the Ragnarok Protocols only two or three times in its entire history, the first being the renegade Oracle Czar Vargo, with the other being the Ravnos Antediluvian. The existence of the Antediluvians has certainly changed the Technocracy's perspective regarding the undead as well as it should since 3,000,000 people dying at the hands of one vampire is not something that can be brushed off.

                  Besides as of Revised Convention Books (2011) the war is over and won and actually apathy is not a terrible problem, you will read nowhere in these books that the Union lost the war, it simply has other problems, much more focused on the future of the Union and the internal strife between the Syndicate and the NWO.
                  The Revised Convention books have an attitude of smug entitlement by the Technocracy but they're a shadow of their former selves, the majority of its resources having become Threat Null. Entire Convention Branches also completely eradicated like the Syndicate SPD. The Union talks a good game but they were utterly fucked in those books (and IX trying to say it wasn't a fascist convention was really something to behold).

                  I did like the fact the Progenitors went, "Bullshit we're not waging the Ascension War. Kill them all!"

                  But we'll find the current state of affairs soon with M20's Technocracy Guide soon to be out by OPP>
                  Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-14-2019, 05:26 PM.


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

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

                    The Technocracy has implemented the Ragnarok Protocols only two or three times in its entire history, the first being the renegade Oracle Czar Vargo, with the other being the Ravnos Antediluvian. The existence of the Antediluvians has certainly changed the Technocracy's perspective regarding the undead as well as it should since 3,000,000 people dying at the hands of one vampire is not something that can be brushed off.
                    No it has not changed their perspectives. It may had, but in the end it didn't.

                    Guide to the Technocracy, 2nd edition, just after the Ravnos incident.


                    Protocols Regarding the Supernatural


                    Vampires: Observe, but do not engage. Threat level minimal.
                    Let’s not mince words here: It’s pretty damn obvious
                    that vampires exist. Every city on the planet is choked with
                    bloodsuckers, and most aren’t as subtle as they think they
                    are. In the largest cities, they’ve reproduced and spread indiscriminately
                    — Andrew Eldritch clones and Lestat wanna-be’s
                    are as common as black T-shirts and bad fashion sense. No
                    matter how many witnesses the “Kindred” intimidate, coerce
                    or manipulate into silence, tracking the vampires in a city
                    with high technology is child’s play. Video surveillance - heat
                    signatures = presence of vampires. You do the math.
                    Despite the ease in tracking them, the Technocracy has
                    grossly underestimated the role of vampires in the real world.
                    Technocrats do not consider most of these “blood cults” to be
                    threats. More importantly, they have no reason to know about
                    millennia-old Ancient Ones waiting to emerge. In the World
                    of Darkness, the Book of Nod is not available in paperback
                    form. On the other hand, Watchers have seen evidence of
                    the Masquerade in action. Vampires usually police their own
                    kind, and sects that don’t believe in the Masquerade are set
                    upon by their brethren. Thus, the Technocracy can afford to
                    regard vampires with ridicule. If the techies knew the truth,
                    they’d mobilize their troops a bit quicker….

                    With the number of deviant mages in the world, the
                    Union does not have enough resources to declare war on
                    the undead. The only thing the Technocracy really requires
                    concerning these creatures of the night is information. Just
                    as any good police department wants to be informed of the
                    largest gangs in town, the Union surveys and monitors local
                    blood cults. Lacking the firepower to take them all down, the
                    Technocrats merely watch and wait.
                    The Union attitude toward vampires may change, though,
                    with the recent awakening of a beast of incredible power in
                    the badlands of India. The Technocracy was forced to apply
                    “Operation Ragnarok,” the approval of any level of resource
                    allocation and losses, in order to stem the advance of a single
                    vampire! If others of this power level rise from their age-long
                    slumber, new measures may be necessary to defend humanity
                    against these fiends.
                    The other sources I quoted are from Revised 2011. For the Syndicate and the NWO, who are the Conventions who calls the shots, the attitude toward Vampires has not changed a bit.


                    As of Revised books, the Technocracy is not fucked up. They have recovered from the Avatar Storm, with the exception of the off-world facilities, their power over economies and governaments is complete and they are still the most powerful organization on heart, but they are plagued by internal problems and the threat of civil war. But this doesn't mean that they couldn't end the SI with a snap of their fingers.
                    As of Threat Null that is a threat that only the Void Engineers knows about, and Threat Null doesn't mean that the Technocracy is fucked, it means that everyone is.
                    Besides, Threat Null is one more reason it would be simply stupid for the Union to declare war on vampires. They already have their hand full.
                    Last edited by Undead rabbit; 08-14-2019, 05:47 PM.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Undead rabbit View Post

                      As of Revised books, the Technocracy is not fucked up. They have recovered from the Avatar Storm, with the exception of the off-world facilities, they power over economies and governaments is complete and they are still the most powerful organization on heart, but they are plagued by internal problems and the threat of civil war. But this doesn't mean that they couldn't end the SI with a snap of their fingers.
                      Like I said, I'm pretty sure in a unified WOD game that the Union is probably behind the SI.


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

                      Comment


                      • So, just a point of information with the whole DC thing:

                        Only 5 of the 16 US intelligence agencies under the ODNI are HQed in DC (the CIA and NSA are in the 11 that aren't). Controlling DC does not mean you control the US intelligence community.

                        Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                        It's like the Sabbat, the Sabbat is a mess internally and eventually did collapse.
                        The Sabbat didn't collapse, it was put on a bus to fight in the Middle East in the Gehenna War because the Middle East isn't a place where vampire games are set. The Sabbat that got left behind/stayed collapsed because the sect let that happen.

                        Hunters are an intristic part of Vampire: The Masquerade. That's the confusion I'm getting. Did Hunters just not show up very often in people's games? They were a regular constant feature in my games.
                        Sure. Hunters like the ones you just mentioned regularly featured in my games: rare individuals that through various means have taken up arms against the undead while most of the world remains ignorant. Fox Mulder types included. The problem is when we get past organizations like the Hunters Hunted series, and thus far past inspirations like Van Helsing or the Frog Brothers.

                        Vampire vs. vampire conflict can only go so far.
                        I was once in a three year campaign that was all vampire vs. vampire... so... apparently "so far" is pretty far.

                        What do you think, thematically, the SI takes away from vampire?
                        The Masquerade part. Once you move past groups like the SoL or SAD hovering at the edges of vampire society ready to pick off vampires that aren't careful enough, the idea of urban fantasy hidden supernaturals starts going out the window. Maybe something like TFV which is just high tech instead of holy magic but still a very limited group that could never hope to purge a city of vampires in secret. The operational strength to do what the SI has done, and not broken the Masquerade wide open, is what takes away from VtM for me.

                        I agree, it needs revisioning but I liked its presence as depicted in CHICAGO BY NIGHT where there's agents monitoring the Kindred of Chicago, a Blacksite in the area, and an actual Kindred sleeper agent.
                        Great, but that's not where it started, or where it's stayed. If that's what the SI was in the "now" of the setting, with the Vienna Chantry destroying SI a possible future, I'd be less done with the SI as written. There's a reason I made a whole post about part of the problem being Vienna was 11 years ago now. It already overwhelmed the setting, it's just how much you like the aftermath.

                        Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                        Like I said, I'm pretty sure in a unified WOD game that the Union is probably behind the SI.
                        Well, since we're not going to know for a year at best (and probably not for much longer), it's a moot point.

                        Besides the SI shouldn't need to stand on the shoulders of Mage to work.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          So, just a point of information with the whole DC thing:

                          Only 5 of the 16 US intelligence agencies under the ODNI are HQed in DC (the CIA and NSA are in the 11 that aren't). Controlling DC does not mean you control the US intelligence community.
                          It does mean that you might NOT control them, though.

                          The Sabbat didn't collapse, it was put on a bus to fight in the Middle East in the Gehenna War because the Middle East isn't a place where vampire games are set. The Sabbat that got left behind/stayed collapsed because the sect let that happen.
                          The Sabbat have launched many Crusades in the past and this one is no different. It also had suffered a 4th Civil War beforehand. I don't see why the Sabbat losing Mexico to the Second Inquisition and then Camarilla as well as the Black Hand Civil War plus other events wouldn't result in it finally falling.

                          Sure. Hunters like the ones you just mentioned regularly featured in my games: rare individuals that through various means have taken up arms against the undead while most of the world remains ignorant. Fox Mulder types included. The problem is when we get past organizations like the Hunters Hunted series, and thus far past inspirations like Van Helsing or the Frog Brothers.
                          I'm just pointing out that as early as the original HUNTERS HUNTED both the SAD and NSA as well as CDC were listed as major threats to vampiredom.

                          I was once in a three year campaign that was all vampire vs. vampire... so... apparently "so far" is pretty far.
                          To each their own.

                          The Masquerade part. Once you move past groups like the SoL or SAD hovering at the edges of vampire society ready to pick off vampires that aren't careful enough, the idea of urban fantasy hidden supernaturals starts going out the window. Maybe something like TFV which is just high tech instead of holy magic but still a very limited group that could never hope to purge a city of vampires in secret. The operational strength to do what the SI has done, and not broken the Masquerade wide open, is what takes away from VtM for me.
                          [

                          My general take on the subject that is if you do successfully locate the havens of X number of vampires that it is very easy to kill them as a human being. As early as UNDER A BLOOD RED MOON, vampire hunting is mostly an issue of going into their haven and eliminating them without waking them up. The older a vampire is, the weaker they are in the daytime. So much so the strongest of vampires at night are almost completely helpless during the day barring Paths or Roads.

                          My view is that while they managed to hit two major cities in canon and two major Vampire bases (proving vampire bases are stupid), the fact they haven't hit more in canon completely shows their limitations.

                          Great, but that's not where it started, or where it's stayed. If that's what the SI was in the "now" of the setting, with the Vienna Chantry destroying SI a possible future, I'd be less done with the SI as written. There's a reason I made a whole post about part of the problem being Vienna was 11 years ago now. It already overwhelmed the setting, it's just how much you like the aftermath.
                          I feel very much about the Tremere that you do about the SI and that they got away with a lot more than they ever should have in canon. This is just a rectifying of the game's text as there's no way with so many enemies they have they wouldn't be hit before now.

                          Well, since we're not going to know for a year at best (and probably not for much longer), it's a moot point.

                          Besides the SI shouldn't need to stand on the shoulders of Mage to work.
                          While I believe it would take away from the fact the game is primarily about mortals, the Technocratic Union itself isn't primarily mages. It's cogs are thousands of regular employees and soldiers.


                          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
                            The Sabbat have launched many Crusades in the past and this one is no different. It also had suffered a 4th Civil War beforehand. I don't see why the Sabbat losing Mexico to the Second Inquisition and then Camarilla as well as the Black Hand Civil War plus other events wouldn't result in it finally falling.
                            Whether or not the Sabbat recover from the Gehenna War as a serious threat to the Camarilla and Anarchs is an unknown at this point, but the idea that they're effectively nonexistant now is not supported by the text.

                            If WW/Paradox want to kill off the Sabbat, that could certainly happen, but they could also come out of the Gehenna War leaner, smarter, and more dangerous than ever. Claiming that it's already happened is inaccurate though.

                            I'm just pointing out that as early as the original HUNTERS HUNTED both the SAD and NSA as well as CDC were listed as major threats to vampiredom.
                            Threats, but in a potential sense, not an active exterminating cities of vampires. Threats vampires could overcome/combat/etc. esp. by corrupting the US government.

                            My general take on the subject that is if you do successfully locate the havens of X number of vampires that it is very easy to kill them as a human being.
                            Depends on the vampire, but it's a significant danger... but vampires have lots of ways to defend a Haven proactively.

                            My view is that while they managed to hit two major cities in canon and two major Vampire bases (proving vampire bases are stupid), the fact they haven't hit more in canon completely shows their limitations.
                            The problem with "proving vampire bases are stupid," is that the way they seemed to have defeated this is, "because the authors said they did."

                            The Vienna Chantry esp. is supposed to have all sorts of defenses against this sort of intrusion and we have no idea how they overcame them.

                            I feel very much about the Tremere that you do about the SI and that they got away with a lot more than they ever should have in canon. This is just a rectifying of the game's text as there's no way with so many enemies they have they wouldn't be hit before now.
                            I really don't like the Tremere history or plots at all either.

                            But then again, every defense of the SI you're making is effectively something I've heard in defense of the Tremere.

                            Introducing poorly thought out faction 2 to "rectify" poorly thought out faction 1 still leaves us with a poorly thought out faction in the game. We've just made things worse trying to "fix" them instead of really fixing them.

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                            • Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                              The SI as written in the books (yes, I've read V5, Cam, and Anarchs even if I don't own them so I can't cite things and have to do a lot from memory or trying to double check things online without the texts themselves) didn't sell me on an expanded/better/etc. version of VtM. My impressions are that it was a blunt instrument to reshape the setting that wasn't given a strong consideration to continuity, narrative cohesion, or versimmilitude to the real world elements it incorporates.
                              This. I can accept a lot of contradictory things, if they add to the setting. But turning WoD to the DnD 4e "Points of Light" just because authors can't imagine how vampires live in the modern world? "Yes, lets force them to not moving from city to city and lets forbides to them any use of modern technology". Perfect decision.

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                              • Originally posted by Jargal View Post

                                This. I can accept a lot of contradictory things, if they add to the setting. But turning WoD to the DnD 4e "Points of Light" just because authors can't imagine how vampires live in the modern world? "Yes, lets force them to not moving from city to city and lets forbides to them any use of modern technology". Perfect decision.
                                The Camarilla's forbidding was followed by immediately all Elders telling their ghouls to dictate for them.


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

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