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Defeating a Lasombra 1v1?

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  • Defeating a Lasombra 1v1?

    Lasombra seems incredibly OP with 5 dots in obtenebration, 2-3 in potence and celerity. What is the best way to get rid of the shadows permanently? Bright lights?

  • #2
    Some strategies:

    As always, go during the day. Send ghouls or mortal agents to do the deed. He'll never have a chance.

    Napalm the room. Fire damages a Tenebrous form, and the Lasombra doesn't have fortitude to soak.

    Have others defeat them for you. Lasombra make infinite enemies throughout their conquests, find some of them and make a plan together.

    Starve them. Kill their herd and force them to use their powers over and over. Use hit n' run tactics, maybe aided by obfuscate. Their powers require a lot of blood, and soon they will be powerless.


    Furthermore, I believe Carthage should be destroyed.

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    • #3
      Kill It with fire

      Dragón breath and flares are the way yo go if you want to kept the tentacles unable to hit you while also making you able to hit him once he asumess his tenebrous form

      Bring lackeys or animals if you have animalism to abuse action economy becuase he will do that too trying to invoque the power of lasombra hentai death machine.


      Hunger pool

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      • #4
        Lasombra often have ghouls. Dominate one of them into doing some early morning arson.

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        • #5
          in my experience, Presence is the most effective discipline against combat lasombras,
          mostly presence 2 and 5, maybe 3 as well

          note that presence is defunct in v20, so it depends if your game fixed it or not

          dominate works well too, however it depends on how you handle dominate with obtenebration 5,
          we don't know if eye contact is possible

          if none of those work, fire is the way to go,
          favor thaumaturgical fire or balefire etc if you have access to them

          otherwise, torches etc will do the job, but are more risky since they can more easily be turned against you

          last but not least, protean 5 or obfuscate,
          obfuscate can really help if you have fire (be it magical or otherwise),

          protean 5 simply allows you to nullify the lasombra's physical attacks the same way they do with obtenebration 5

          note that several of those strategies require you to know that the lasombra is there,
          obtenebration makes it hard to detect lasombra in relatively dark areas,
          and you maybe required to roll for detection or use a sufficiently bright light to separate the obtenebration shadows from the ambient darkness,
          auspex or protean 1 will make the task trivial however
          Last edited by Pleiades; 08-25-2019, 06:33 AM.


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          • #6
            Lots and lots of floodlights on the chosen field of battle to minimize shadows and permit redundancy (minimizes the avenues they can use Obtenebration to attack or escape by, such as Shadow Walk.) As others noted, fighting during daytime and extensive use of fire are also desirable. Fuel-air explosive traps and other thermobaric weapons as as other general incendiary devices are desirable too.

            Oh and of course magic. Thaumaturgy, sorcery and True Magick are all applicable here. Considering that the real challenge is going to be containing (isn't affected by gravity remember and won't behave like a solid) and keeping the target in place so you can destroy it and the limitations of Tenebrous Form on physically affecting/attacking potential threats some form of spellcasting is probably going to be of great use to containing/attacking the target. I'd consider significant levels of True Faith to be included in this for the same purposes too.

            Terrain is also going to be a major factor for the reasons already stated if your goal is to permanently remove the target as opposed to just driving it away.

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            • #7
              I agree with the above.

              Burn, baby, burn!

              In fact, come to think of it, that's always good advice in the WoD, not just Lasombra. You'd be amazed how much of the WoD takes agg from fire.

              Oh, and one small detail to remind your ST of: how does one make eye contact to use Dominate in total darkness?

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              • #8
                No vampire worth their salt would go 1v1 against anyone willingly. They would have back up and plans and back up plans and planned back up and, hopefully, not have the attack in question linked back to them.

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                • #9

                  Originally posted by Nosimplehiway View Post

                  Oh, and one small detail to remind your ST of: how does one make eye contact to use Dominate in total darkness?
                  if you're talking about the lasombra using dominate, lasombra can see in their own darkness,
                  which makes dominate really powerful when combined with obtenebration 2, since their victim can't make eye contact while the lasombra can

                  they also have a merit that reverses light and dark, making them see perfectly in dark areas, and be blind in lit areas,
                  that ability can be switched on and off



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                  • #10
                    I agree that Lasombra are an issue, but its all about if they know it's coming. The key thing to remember about VTM is that if you get the drop... you win the fight.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pleiades View Post


                      if you're talking about the lasombra using dominate, lasombra can see in their own darkness,
                      which makes dominate really powerful when combined with obtenebration 2, since their victim can't make eye contact while the lasombra can

                      they also have a merit that reverses light and dark, making them see perfectly in dark areas, and be blind in lit areas,
                      that ability can be switched on and off
                      There's a reason I phrased it as a question. It's not entirely clear RAW how that works.

                      The sidebar on eye contact in V20, page 152, hedges a bit and raises more questions than it answers. It implies that all that is required is for the Dominator to "see his victim's soul". It isn't necessary for the victim to have their eyes open, or even have eyes, to be controlled. It still maintains that the user needs to "capture his target's attention", so long as they "find the soul of his victim laid bare".

                      (Frankly, it would seem easier to just accept that if you gouge out your eyes you can't be controlled. That would be small consolation among the many problems with rendering oneself blind, but that moves us out of RAW and into homebrew land. So, here we are.)

                      Exactly what constitutes walking around with a bare soul is not explained.

                      Neither is getting someone's attention. Is it even possible to get someone's attention during a use of Obtenebration 2? How does the Lasombra issue commands if the victim can't distinguish what's being said?

                      The tarry mass actually extinguishes light sources it engulfs (with the exception of fire), and muffles sounds until they are indistinguishable. Those within the cloud lose all sense of sight and feel as though they’ve been immersed in pitch. Sound also warps and distorts within the cloud, making it nearly impossible to accomplish anything (+2 difficulty, as per Blind Fighting on p. 274). Even those possessed of Heightened Senses, Eyes of the Beast, Tongue of the Asp, and similar powers suffer the penalty for blindness due to the unnatural darkness. -V20, p189
                      (Never mind that those using Heightened Senses always take the penalty for Blind Fighting in the dark, they just have enough of a bonus to cancel it out.)
                      (Never mind further that clearly the writer has never actually been immersed in pitch. It's not just weird and disorienting, if true the victim should be almost entirely immobilized.)

                      If one need only have a victim with a "bare soul", then...
                      • Does this mean that if a victim had his back turned to a Lasombra, they could not Dominate them. But, if the Lasombra used Obtenebration 2 to plunge the victim into darkness, the Lasombra could then control someone whose back was turned?
                      • If one uses Auspex 3 to view an aura from behind a subject, would that allow Dominate? The soul is bare1, and, after all, the victim is seen. Awesome for DomMalks and Tremere.
                      • If one uses Necromancy to see a Wraith by looking into the Shadowlands from the Skinlands, would Dominate be on the table? A Wraith is (sort of) nothing but soul, and they are seen. This would make for some awesome synergy for Giovanni and Nagaraja. Makes me wonder why anyone would buy Sepulchre Path 3 (Compel Soul2), if level 1 and some Dominate would work.
                      • If an Infernalist sells their soul to a demon, do they become immune to Dominate, regardless of eye contact? The soul is not there, in the victim, so can't be "laid bare". Of course, the demon could presumably look at the captive soul wherever it is that demons store souls, and use Dominate, but otherwise?
                      • Quite a few Thaumaturgical rituals and paths mention a "soul" inside non-humans. If an Assamite Sorcerer uses Confer with the Blade to "[speak] to a weapon’s soul", could they Dominate it, and what would that mean?
                      • For that matter the description of Empathy 5 (V20, p101) reads: "The human soul conceals no mysteries from you." Wait, never mind. No Lasombra has ever had Empathy 5, so the question is moot.
                      On the other hand, there are many other places in V20 that seem to say that if the victim can't see the Dominator's eyes, and understand the command, the power fails.

                      Examples:
                      "Dominate requires that the vampire capture her victim’s gaze." -V20, p151
                      "...the subject won’t comply if he can’t understand the vampire, no matter how powerful the Kindred’s will is." -ibid.
                      "The vampire locks eyes with the subject and speaks a one-word command, which the subject must be obey instantly. (sic) " -V20, p152
                      "Both Kindred and target must be free from distraction, since Mesmerize requires intense concentration and precise wording to be effective." -ibid
                      "After capturing the subject’s gaze, the vampire delves into the subject’s memories, stealing or re-creating them at his whim."-V20, p153
                      "Speaking isn’t required, but the vampire must capture the victim’s gaze."-V20, p154
                      Note how, weirdly, the power descriptions don't actually use the phrase "eye contact". The phrase of choice seems to be "victim's gaze" or a similar form. The gaze is that of the victim, not that of the Dominator, implying the victim must at least see the person controlling them. This is a direct contradiction of the "Eye Contact" sidebar.

                      Also note, how often the victim and controller must be free of distraction and able to communicate. This does not sound like what happens during Obtenebration 2.

                      Bottom line: it is not slam-dunk clear how every ST would rule, as the RAW is ambiguous. If you are facing a Lasombra, ask the ST how they will handle Dominate inside an Obt2 field of darkness.

                      Feeling guilty about playing the ref, instead of relying on your native abilities to defeat the Lasombra?

                      Don't hesitate.

                      No true Lasombra would refuse such advantage were the tables turned.

                      1V20, p 140: "The power of Aura Perception (Auspex 2) allows a vampire to take a brief glimpse at the soul of a subject."
                      2Note the name of the power. Wraiths are souls, or at least have souls.

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                      • #12
                        heh, forgot that obtenebration muffled sounds,
                        that would def eliminate dominate (unless auspex 4 is involved...maybe)

                        and demons only claim an infernalist's soul after their death,
                        Tlaloc is the only spirit that would take pieces of souls off of living vampires,
                        but I can't think of any vampire that lived without a soul,
                        it's safe to assume that once you run out of soul, you just die

                        of course, the fluff on everything soul related is very confusing as well,
                        even the KotE version, while more detailed, isn't consistent when applied to other splats, so...yeah


                        now, for spirits and wraiths,
                        my explanation for why domination doesn't work on them is because while dominate requires the soul as a link,
                        the discipline doesn't affect the soul, but the mind

                        it's easier to understand from a Mage perspective I think,
                        the dominate effects fall under the mind sphere,
                        while extra dimensional beings are affected by the spirit sphere

                        dominate might be a mix of mind and spirit,
                        spirit to link with the victim, and mind to do the...dominating...thing
                        or the eye contact/soul contact is just their correspondence
                        Last edited by Pleiades; 08-27-2019, 07:02 PM.


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                        • #13
                          Never in a million years would I allow Dominate to be used in Obtenebration. For me it is clear that the "victim" has to see the dominator.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Pleiades View Post
                            now, for spirits and wraiths,
                            my explanation for why domination doesn't work on them is because while dominate requires the soul as a link,
                            the discipline doesn't affect the soul, but the mind
                            I've only played Wraith a few times, and it was twenty years ago so my memory is a bit hazy. Do Wraiths not have minds? Is it like an Egyptian ka-ba-jb-swt-etc thing?

                            Oh, and sorry it took so long to reply. I didn't realize you had posted.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by lucasstriker View Post
                              Lasombra seems incredibly OP with 5 dots in obtenebration, 2-3 in potence and celerity. What is the best way to get rid of the shadows permanently? Bright lights?
                              To beat a Lasombra 1v1, you have to not fight them 1v1. Have the Lasombra fight your gang of Ghouls (human or animal), your Coterie, the local Prince, the Sheriff, a bomb, some other clan entirely, a stand-in to die for you and make the Lasombra ignore you, fire, or their own mind through various forms of misdirection and mind games. Alternatively, "Fletch" your way through it. In game as in life, there will always, always, always be somebody bigger and tougher than you. Outwit them. Outmaneuver them. Outclass them. "Outsocialize" them.

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