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[V5] Kiasyd/Maeghar as Thin-Blood Vampire Faeries

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  • [V5] Kiasyd/Maeghar as Thin-Blood Vampire Faeries

    This is a take on the Kiasyd/Maeghar I developed for my current V5 home-brew game with a Malkavian Maeghar PC.

    The premise is that fae-touched people when Embraced become Thin Bloods of a sorts. Their vampiric blood is thin because of how strong their fae blood is, regardless of Sire's Generation. They are more faerie than vampire.

    Apart from having a Generation, but a cap of zero on Blood Potency, they follow V5's normal Thin-Blood rules. These Kiasyd/Maeghar are a bit more powerful than normal Thin-Bloods, because of how we built their multiple Thin-Blooded Merits and Flaws.


    Kiasyd / Maeghar Thin-Blood Character Creation

    Obligatory:
    - Clan Curse Flaw: this is actually not for the Sire's Clan Bane, but for the Kiasyd/Maeghar Clan Bane, a result of their faerie blood.

    Take this Flaw twice:
    - once for the Vulnerability to Cold Iron Bane (damage from Cold Iron Weapons cause Aggravated Damage and add +1 [as a Thin-Blood, Bane Severity counts as 1 for this purpose] to the number of damage points caused);
    - once for the Obvious Supernatural Mien Bane (the difficulty of rolls to recognize the Kiasyd/Maeghar otherworldly nature decrease by one [as a Thin Blood, Bane Severity counts as 1 for this purpose]).

    Balance these Flaws with:
    - the Thin-Blood Alchemist Merit
    - the Discipline Affinity Merit, with one of your Sire’s Clan Discipline as the focus.

    Optional:
    - Clan Curse: some Kiasyd/Maeghar have enough of the sire’s Blood to have the Sire's Clan Bane as well. If you take this Flaw, take the Discipline Affinity Merit with a second Discipline of your Sire’s Clan as the focus.

    Also, Thin-Blood Alchemy function as normal, almost always as Athanor Corporis: the Kiasyd/Maeghar use their own body and their inherently faerie blood to concoct effects. Hunting fae and other supernaturals is also a common practice, involving Fixatio formulae. The Discipline is mostly known as Kiasyd Alchemy among the Kiasyd, who usually experiment more with the blood of other supernaturals; while the Maeghar would probably not have a specific name for how they use their fae-touched blood, and develop more uses involving their own fae-blood rather other creature's.

    Most Mythreceria powers become Thin-Blood Alchemy formulas, always requiring the Kiasyd/Maeghar's own blood and some other rare ingredients.

    In our game we've been having fun summoning minor fae Retainers (such as Sprites, as per the power Ay Befriend form the MET version of Mytherceria) with Thin-Blood Alchemy rules.


    Ideas? Critiques? Suggestions?

  • #2
    I’ve always loved the fact that the Kiasyd exist, but I’ve yet to play one because I know that reading up on Changelings would just lead to another expensive addition to my book collection. Any attempt to develop the bloodline or flesh them out intrigues me.
    Last edited by Reasor; 08-18-2019, 10:50 AM.

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    • #3
      Seems reasonable to me! Just a couple things:
      • Vulnerability to cold iron is currently a one-dot Folkloric Bane; is there a balance reason to make it take up a Thin-Blood Flaw slot instead?
      • Normal thinblood rules don't allow "doubling up" on merits like Discipline Affinity; you might want to specify that this is an exception to that

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      • #4
        You do not need the merit to invest in Alchemy. The merit is basically there to exchange 5xp for a flaw.

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        • #5
          Reasor My player has no knowledge whatsoever of Changeling: The Dreaming, I don't think it is necessary to an enjoyable Kiasyd play experience! We focus on the theme of a vampire outcast oddity, suffering for something lost that is yearned for yet unknown and unremembered--like missing someone you love but not remembering their face. That's how we depict the relationship with the lost fae nature.

          Draconis The Folkloric Bane Flaw is actually for taking aggravated damage from silver, not cold iron. However, I do wonder if it is really necessary for the cold iron damage and the obvious supernatural mien to be one banes each. Can you point me to where it says Thin-Blood RAW doesn't allow doubling on merits such as Discipline Affinity, as long as they are balanced by a flaw? I can see how that might make sense, but couldn't find it in the book.

          Sharei I included the merit in the Character Creation as obligatory because I assume all Kiasyd/Maeghar develop Thin-Blood Alchemy. That's how they get their fae powers (inherent in their blood).

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          • #6
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            This is a take on the Kiasyd/Maeghar I developed for my current V5 home-brew game with a Malkavian Maeghar PC.
            Small quibble: pick a name. Or, explain that they use both names for some reason, like minor differences between the two types or regional usage.
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            The premise is that fae-touched people when Embraced become Thin Bloods of a sorts. Their vampiric blood is thin because of how strong their fae blood is, regardless of Sire's Generation.
            Do you mean all vampires embraced from the fae-touched must be of this type, or just that it is the most common result? Allowing that it often, but not invariably, happens like this leaves open other possible character concepts, like fae who forgot who they are because of the embrace. Increasing story options is usually better than reducing them.
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            They are more faerie than vampire.
            I don't see mechanics for how they are more fae than vampire. Oh, there's the iron flaw. That doesn't make them fae-ier than other vampires any more than a vampire who has a folkloric bane for silver is "more werewolf than vampire".
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Apart from having a Generation, but a cap of zero on Blood Potency,
            ...just like bog standard thin-bloods...
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            they follow V5's normal Thin-Blood rules. These Kiasyd/Maeghar are a bit more powerful than normal Thin-Bloods, because of how we built their multiple Thin-Blooded Merits and Flaws.
            I'm not sure how they're more powerful. It's fine if they're not, of course, but they seem like pretty standard Thinbloods to me. The only substantive difference (besides adding a couple homebrew clan banes) is that the merits and flaws they take are prescribed for them, rather than being freely chosen. Since Thinbloods have a maximum of three merits/flaws, this means they are limited in what they can take. That is, based on your rules, there is no such thing as a Maeghar who has Daydrinker and Catenating Blood, or suffers from Mortal Frailty and Branded by the Camarilla. By leaving only one slot, you reduce story options.

            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Kiasyd / Maeghar Thin-Blood Character Creation

            Obligatory:
            - Clan Curse Flaw: this is actually not for the Sire's Clan Bane, but for the Kiasyd/Maeghar Clan Bane, a result of their faerie blood.

            Take this Flaw twice:
            - once for the Vulnerability to Cold Iron Bane (damage from Cold Iron Weapons cause Aggravated Damage
            Okay. Sigh. I hesitate to bring this up, because pages and pages of posts in multiple threads on this board have gone 'round and 'round on this. I really have no desire whatsoever to revisit it. But, what exactly do you mean by "cold iron"? In real world metallurgy, it is kind of not a thing. It more or less didn't exist in superstition or folklore tradition as a distinct material from plain old "iron", until the 1970s when D&D published some monsters who were vulnerable to it. There is a Kipling poem which mentions "cold iron", but in a clearly poetic sense rather than as a well-defined material.
            So, if you want to include a vulnerability to "cold iron", may I suggest including with it a clear definition of what that means?
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            and add +1 [as a Thin-Blood, Bane Severity counts as 1 for this purpose] to the number of damage points caused);
            Weaknesses which add +1 damage to various damage types can get weird in game, for math reasons.

            Let's say a pc is vulnerable to silver. Let's say they get attacked with a solid silver great axe; the normal outcome lands at 10 levels of damage, plus 1 for the flaw, for a total 10% increase in damage. Now, let's say they get stabbed with a silver dagger for 2 levels of damage, plus 1 for the flaw, which is a 50% increase. Now, a silver letter opener does 1 level, plus 1, for a doubling of damage. See the problem? The flaw doesn't scale, because the smaller the initial damage, the more the flaw increases it. If I had this flaw I would rather get hit with the great axe once than the letter opener six times.

            A more extreme example, in which it really becomes a problem. Let's say the silver-vulnerable character is babysitting the infant child of a rich friend. The baby has a silver rattle, and has a habit of throwing it out of their crib... a game babies seem endlessly amused by. Each time the rattle flies out and hits the babysitter, the pc receives 1 level of agg damage where someone else would received none. They could be a pile of ash by the time the parents return. Cause of death: he was baby rattled!

            With a flat +1, all sorts of otherwise benign, but commonly encountered, interactions with the world become potentially deadly. Not that a harsh flaw is wrong, but a mechanic that leads to unexpectedly silly outcomes is less than ideal.
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            - once for the Obvious Supernatural Mien Bane (the difficulty of rolls to recognize the Kiasyd/Maeghar otherworldly nature decrease by one [as a Thin Blood, Bane Severity counts as 1 for this purpose]).
            In general, it is more elegant to apply an increased difficulty to the pc's action than to apply a modifier to an outside person. For example, let's say a hunter walks into a bar and sees eight people there. They scan the room to detect anything suspicious. They roll Wits+Occult, and the difficulty target number is... umm, do we increase it for the whole room? Should the presence of the Maeghar somehow make the Ventrue standing by the juke box or the Hermetic mage playing pool more obvious? Should we have the hunter roll multiple times, once for the room and once for the Maeghar? See the problem?

            Take a look at V5, p 120, "Modifiers". In general, if the modifier is internal to a character (like a clan flaw), you would reduce the character's dice pool for the action. In general, the difficulty itself goes up for external phenomena, like poor lighting or bad weather. See also, the Nosferatu clan bane (V5, p85) for an example of this. In fact, you could probably just use the second half of the Nosferatu bane for this flaw.
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Balance these Flaws with:
            - the Thin-Blood Alchemist Merit
            - the Discipline Affinity Merit, with one of your Sire’s Clan Discipline as the focus.
            And, if the sire is a Caitiff? Or, a Thinblood with the Catenating Flaw merit, but no Discipline Affinities?
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Optional:
            - Clan Curse: some Kiasyd/Maeghar have enough of the sire’s Blood to have the Sire's Clan Bane as well. If you take this Flaw, take the Discipline Affinity Merit with a second Discipline of your Sire’s Clan as the focus.
            So, Maeghar have the option of doing the same thing every other Thinblood has the option of doing? Or, do you mean at the ST's option Maeghar are not allowed to mix and match clan flaws and discipline affinitites. So, taking Clan Flaw: Ventrue and Discipline Affinity: Celerity is not allowed for Maeghar, even though it is fully legal for standard Thinbloods?
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Also, Thin-Blood Alchemy function as normal, almost always as Athanor Corporis: the Kiasyd/Maeghar use their own body and their inherently faerie blood to concoct effects. Hunting fae and other supernaturals is also a common practice, involving Fixatio formulae. The Discipline is mostly known as Kiasyd Alchemy among the Kiasyd, who usually experiment more with the blood of other supernaturals; while the Maeghar would probably not have a specific name for how they use their fae-touched blood, and develop more uses involving their own fae-blood rather other creature's.
            Wait... "among the Kiasyd"? So, is there an organized community of Kiasyd? How do they find one another?

            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Most Mythreceria powers become Thin-Blood Alchemy formulas, always requiring the Kiasyd/Maeghar's own blood and some other rare ingredients.
            A few examples of this, with specific mechanics, would be helpful.

            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            In our game we've been having fun summoning minor fae Retainers (such as Sprites, as per the power Ay Befriend form the MET version of Mytherceria) with Thin-Blood Alchemy rules.
            What are your mechanics for this?
            Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
            Ideas? Critiques? Suggestions?
            You did ask for all this, right?

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            • #7
              Thinblood can pay exp in Alchemy during the play of the game or with the freebie points in character creation. They do not need the merit itself to learn it. As said before, you exchange 5xp, that is the cost of the first dot of thinblood alchemy, for a flaw.
              Last edited by Sharei; 08-19-2019, 08:43 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Sharei View Post
                Thinblood can pay exp in Alchemy during the play of the game or with the freebie points in character creation. They do not need the merit itself to learn it. As said before, you exchange 5xp, that is the cost of the first dot of thinblood alchemy, for a flaw.
                Which I hadn't noticed before. Or, at least, hadn't noticed the significance of it.

                I wonder if this (transitively) sets a baseline xp value for Thinblood merits and flaws? I mean, has anyone considered allowing merits to be purchased or flaws to be bought off in the course of play at a cost of 5xp?

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                • #9
                  Nosimplehiway Thanks for the detailed review! I'll try to answer as best as I can... This kind of feedback was exactly what I was looking for, to improve on something it might not have occurred to me. Thanks! Also, my players are very unconcerned with rules and trust me to keep track of everything, so I don't get the chance to debate "The System" with them.

                  Just to be clear, my first post is not a write-up of the bloodline, just some house rules and approaches trying to follow V5 rules I've been using (reluctantly) in my current game. That's why I used Kiasyd/Maeghar in my post, because I'm just referencing canon:

                  https://whitewolf.fandom.com/wiki/Maeghar
                  https://whitewolf.fandom.com/wiki/Kiasyd

                  And I should also have mentioned I'm using V5 rules, but considering the DAV20 version of the Kiasyd where they are simply Embraced fae people that can come from any Clan. In the modern setting, presented in V20 Guide to the Tal'Mahe'Ra, these vampires are called Maeghar. In both versions they can pick two disciplines from their Sire's Clan, and Mytherceria, or Necromancy (in the modern setting).

                  Thus, DA Kiasyd / modern Maeghar are not exclusively the Lasombra connected fae vampires, based in Strasbourg and allied with the Sabbat, who led a pogrom against all other fae vampires and claim to be the only fae vampires that ever existed. This is actually a plot being explored in my current game, as my PC is a Malkavian Maeghar, who recently discovered there are others "like" him, and that his "people" have suffered genocide.

                  For my current game, I've decided a fae vampire is Thin-Blood because the fact Thin-Blood don't follow normal vampire rules seemed to apply well to the fae vampire concept: more alive, less vulnerable to the sun, different power sets, etc. I assumed some of them can possibly retain the Clan Bane from their parent Clan in addition to their fae-related weakness. I'm not sure what would happen if a Caitiff or Thin-Blood successfully embraced a fae... They would probably retain only the fae related Bane?

                  I'm quite happy you brought the issue of cold iron, because I've read on Changeling: The Dreaming books (and in a few other instances) that it is indeed something poorly defined. However, it has featured in our game--without much problem--as just something extra harmful that can somehow be made, that some (extremely dangerous) enemies have access to and know how to use. If they know about the vulnerability (which few do), they can get it. It's poorly defined, I agree, but for the game it has been enough.

                  Also, convinced by your argument, I guess that just having "cold iron" cause aggravated damage is quite enough. I was following V5 by trying to scale Clan Banes by Blood Potency, but since I'm assuming all fae vampires are Thin-Bloods with Zero Blood Potency (considered Blood Potency 1 for those that have Clan Banes), the point is moot.

                  I also agree that the Obvious Supernatural Mien applying a negative modifier to the PC's dice pool is way better, thanks for that.

                  I'l try to post something about our version of Mytherceria as Thin-Blood Alchemy next. Summon fae helpers is in the V20 MET version of Mytherceria, as a level 3 power. It summons invisible pixies that are absolutely not combatants and can perform minor tasks when alone. That might sound silly, but it's proved to be extremely fun (and sometimes useful).

                  Also, not related to any issue you brought, but I'd like to mention that I'm using the concept of Mists from Changeling: The Dreaming, which clouds anything fae related from the memory of those without fae magic, to claim an Embraced fae has very little memory of its previous fae existence. Depending on when the Embrace took place, that might mean not remembering a number of incarnations as a Changeling, as well as the time as a pure fae before adopting the Changeling Way. I do wonder if the successful Embrace traps the fae spirit in the incarnation that has been transformed.





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