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Is Koldunic Sorcery a Wyrm-tainted power?

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  • Is Koldunic Sorcery a Wyrm-tainted power?

    So, Koldunic Sorcery is one of the few vampiric powers that lets kindred interact meaningfully with the spirit world. It enables them to enter the Umbra, command lesser nature spirits, summon elementals to assist them, conjure Slavic 'demons' and bargain with them, it even lets them somehow ghoul spirits by feeding them their blood. All extremely useful to know.

    Problem is, from all we know about the way Fera and their spirit allies perceive the undead (see; Abominations, Sense Wyrm e.t.c.), it'd be extremely unlikely for anything but a Wyrm, or at least heavily corrupted Wyld spirit to answer to any of the above. Doubly so when you consider that Kupala, the source of Koldunism, is thought of as a Talon of the Wyrm by Garou.

    Is it even elaborated upon if there's a connection between Koldunism and the Wyrm, or if it only affects Banes? How do you portray it in your games?

  • #2
    This is a topic I've also been thinking and reading about lately I think it's mostly a "depends on the ST" thing, like most crossover stuff. I think V20: DA might have mentioned an association with Banes in one of their write-ups on Koldunism, but don't quote me on that.

    The general consensus I've picked up is that yes, koldun can only work with Banes or other corrupted spirits. I don't think a specific link with the Wyrm exists beyond Kupala possibly being a Talon, though that's true of most associations between Kindred and the Wyrm.

    I do have one pet idea regarding the details of koldunism and the association with spiritual corruption mentioned even when WtA is ignored. As noted, most agree that only corrupted spirits serve kolduns. But if Koldunic powers and rituals work everywhere, does that means there's always a corrupt spirit handy nearby? Or does it mean that most uses of a Koldunic ability corrupts a previously untainted spirit in order to get it to serve the Cainite sorcerer?

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    • #3
      I think the vampire taints the land through dumpling sorcery. Dumplingism itself would be quite harmless.


      V5 is not VTM

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Logothétēs View Post
        it'd be extremely unlikely for anything but a Wyrm, or at least heavily corrupted Wyld spirit to answer to any of the above.
        they do answer, not because they like to, but because they're forced to,
        koldunism is the equivalent of dominate/presence but on spirits instead of mortals

        as for whether it's percived as a tainted power, I'd say mostly likely yes, as it still requires vitae to fuel (so, it's not necessarily Kupala's or any other deity's fault)


        -

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        • #5
          I treat almost all powers like this are wymish*, except some very neutral powers (aka. some spiritual paths)

          *Just like Ogham. DAW clearly says it summons banes in garou view, but vampire won’t recognize this.
          Last edited by Rock113; 02-10-2020, 07:25 AM.

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          • #6
            I would say no, because the Garou's view is overly simplistic. Remember, these are the guys who genocided other shifter's because they were "of the wyrm". There are likely plenty of spirits who don't give a damn about the Garou's religious beliefs, and just put on a show when summoned by garou. I think that, at least when you are playing vampire, you should treat spirits as having very individual and local interests, like the pantheons of ancient greece and rome.

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            • #7
              I'm not a hundred percent sure of this, because a dog would just become a corrupted dog, but when you use Koldunic sorcery you use natural elements. Fire/Water/Earth/Air. The Wyrm version of these elements aren't that; Balefire (radiation) Toxin, corrosion, smog. You're definitely not using the Wyrm elements with Koldunic sorcery, which are opposed to the standard elements. But you can totally use balefire with Dark Thaumaturgy.

              I think you're forcing regular spirits to do your bidding or you're directly utilizing their power. The magical method of which you force them may taint the spirits, but I imagine that's because you're a vampire, not because of something within the dumpling power set.

              I imagine Garou would get offended regardless, because they're like that.


              V5 is not VTM

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              • #8
                Vampires by nature as I recall were SUPPOSED to be wyrm tainted, and that should include Koldunic sorcery. I think one could argue that it's not a a Bad/corrupted form of Wyrm 'taint' though, reflecting more the original purpose (as noted above its more 'elemental' and 'natural' in many ways, even if it has the potential to be abused or corrupted.) Garou probably wouldn't ever make such a distinction given their biases towards Vampires, but it needn't be either/or.

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                • #9
                  It's worth remembering that, as of V20/DAV20, Koldunism is divided between Kraina and Ways. The ancient and modern (or pre- and post-Revolt) Koldunic forms, respectively. And that the Ways are implied to have their roots in Kupala.

                  So, while none of what a Koldun does is necessarily nice or respectful to spirits (being a form of blood sorcery that forces spirits to do as the Koldun demands), an argument can be made that the newer Ways are more Wyrm-tainted than the older Kraina.


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                  • #10
                    I think Kupala is either a very powerful Bane or a literal demon.


                    The die is cast.

                    Julius Caesar crossing the Rubicon

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Penelope View Post
                      I think Kupala is either a very powerful Bane or a literal demon.
                      In fact Bane and Earthbound are all right. In earlier edition, when DtF didn’t be around, it is a bane (Transylvania by night iirc). After DtF released and the demon which is more “traditional” finally appeared, it is an Earthbound.

                      * Btw someone used to summarize all sorts of “demon” in cwod. Generally there are two kinds: evil spirit especially before DtF ( in fact almost all “demon” before DtF are evil spirits), and more “traditional” fallen angels after DtF. One expection I can recall, demon in kuei-jin, can be considered as creatures corrupted or created by yama kings

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                      • #12
                        I think Koldunic Sorcery is explicitly Wyrm Tainted because it was taught to the Tzimisce by Kupala, who is a demon, and it is linked to Transylvania's natural world which is infused with Kupala's power.

                        SPIRIT THAUMATURGY might be different.

                        I also note that the Garou aren't actually 100% correct about their knowledge of the Spirit World because they're heavily biased. Vampires are unnatural reannimated corpses tainted by the Beast of War (that taints Garou as well), however a lot of spirits are not going to care about that.

                        Weaver spirits, certainly won't.


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

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                        • #13
                          I really believe that it is Wyrm Tainted

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                          • #14
                            Little_Miss_ Serneholt if Kupala was a demon and not a Bane, would it still be Wyrm-tainted?


                            The die is cast.

                            Julius Caesar crossing the Rubicon

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Penelope View Post
                              Little_Miss_ Serneholt if Kupala was a demon and not a Bane, would it still be Wyrm-tainted?
                              In a United World of Darkness, the Garou aren't 100% correct about how the universe works.

                              They just call things Wyrm tainted or not based on their religion.

                              So I'd say yes, even if they have nothing to do with the Wyrm.


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

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