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I don't like that Conditioning is gone

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Haquim View Post
    That said it's more of an NPC kind of power than anything else, having a conditioned servant isn't that useful when you can have retainers doing the same things and showing more initiative. Yes, a conditioned servant is more resistant to dominate from other vampires, but is it worth 4 dots?
    I always found Conditioning to be very useful in helping explain how a vampire builds Influence. It was possible to impose fairly "light" conditioning in the sense that certain "drones" only need to be conditioned to pick up the phone and call this # and leave a message if they found something that affects the Masquerade or other item important to the Vampire. Or that in doing their normal job, they also always do X, Y, or Z as well. Or that someone could be called and told to do something like in the movie Telefon.

    There are other ways to build Influence of course, but I think any vampire with massive amounts of Influence pretty much needs Conditioning in some capacity. Especially in any kind of bureaucratic environment.

    Like a lot of things in the game, Conditioning is something that is dependent on interpretation of the ST. I've seen STs that were far too lenient, and others that were too restrictive in what it could do. When I ST, I try to use the guidelines if it is something that fits within the gothic horror genre, and if so lead towards allowing it but without going too crazy.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Haquim View Post
      .....
      Your entire argument is "But the Storyteller doesn't have to follow the rules as written"

      please, realise the irrelevance of this comment in an argument. The basic rules are important, because not every storyteller is Jesus with good ideas (if all the terrible headcanon ideas and houserules of this forum are any indication). There is never any reasonable grounds to say "the core rules which are flawed are OK because I expect them to be houseruled"


      V5 is not VTM

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      • #18
        Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
        Your entire argument is "But the Storyteller doesn't have to follow the rules as written"

        please, realise the irrelevance of this comment in an argument. The basic rules are important, because not every storyteller is Jesus with good ideas (if all the terrible headcanon ideas and houserules of this forum are any indication). There is never any reasonable grounds to say "the core rules which are flawed are OK because I expect them to be houseruled"
        My entire argument is that Conditioning used to be a 4 dot power that wasn't useful for players in 99% of games, therefore it may very well be turned into something NPCs can do without the need for a power players can spend XP on.

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        • #19
          1- You're wrong. Conditioning is great. The only barrier for conditioning is it's cost and the fact that, y'know, elders aren't going to take kindly to neonates massing forces. If you're in the right position though, conditioning is a godsend.

          2- The World of Darkness isn't DnD where NPCs can do things the players just can't and that's ok. Part of the appeal of reducing generation is being able to do the things that elders and methuselahs can do. You might not learn thaumaturgy as easily as Tremere, but if you take risks, get a hold of the right sources and study hard, you can do anything any Tremere can. As above, so below. Handwaving NPC powers as NPC powers and denying reasonable access to them is against the spirit of the game (I'm not suggesting you make learning 6th level thanatosis easy, but if the players dedicate themselves to it, it should be doable)



          V5 is not VTM

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          • #20
            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
            2- The World of Darkness isn't DnD where NPCs can do things the players just can't and that's ok. Part of the appeal of reducing generation is being able to do the things that elders and methuselahs can do. You might not learn thaumaturgy as easily as Tremere, but if you take risks, get a hold of the right sources and study hard, you can do anything any Tremere can. As above, so below. Handwaving NPC powers as NPC powers and denying reasonable access to them is against the spirit of the game (I'm not suggesting you make learning 6th level thanatosis easy, but if the players dedicate themselves to it, it should be doable)
            Do you really expect PCs to be learning ninth- and tenth-level powers in your games? I've always considered those to be a waste of precious wordcount, which could have instead been devoted to things your average PC could actually get.

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            • #21
              At least you still have shampoo.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                1- You're wrong. Conditioning is great. The only barrier for conditioning is it's cost and the fact that, y'know, elders aren't going to take kindly to neonates massing forces. If you're in the right position though, conditioning is a godsend.

                2- The World of Darkness isn't DnD where NPCs can do things the players just can't and that's ok. Part of the appeal of reducing generation is being able to do the things that elders and methuselahs can do. You might not learn thaumaturgy as easily as Tremere, but if you take risks, get a hold of the right sources and study hard, you can do anything any Tremere can. As above, so below. Handwaving NPC powers as NPC powers and denying reasonable access to them is against the spirit of the game (I'm not suggesting you make learning 6th level thanatosis easy, but if the players dedicate themselves to it, it should be doable)
                1. In order to work as you'd like Conditioning to work the ST needs to spend time to allow you rolls (potentially once per scene), keep tabs on the people you want conditioned and generally speaking do a lot of book-keeping and that means the ST and other players have to waste their time waiting for this stuff to happen while their time would be better spent playing.

                2. Having lots of conditioned thralls is not going to be of much help in a standard chronicle. The ST needs to modify the chronicle to suit the power effects and has to be willing to let drones to the heavy lifting and have an important effect on the chronicle... most STs I know don't want to shift the focus of the chronicle from the PCs to one PC thralls (which, btw, are not the VtM equivalent of summoned monsters in D&D).

                3. Aside from that, the power does NOT give you access to high levels of resources and retainers BUT players usually start claiming having several thralls means they should get access to their resources and be able to use them as retainers, which is a problem of its own (the fact you have a 4th level power does NOT mean you can skip spending XP on backgrounds).

                4. In the WoD UNLIKE in most editions of D&D it's EXPECTED NPCs to be able to do things the PCs can't do. Ask yourself why the Antediluvians have never been statted (that question was actually asked and answered btw) , or why Ur-Shulgi is explicitly meant to not be antagonized directly by PCs. The concept of "plot device" power was introduced in the WoD to express the idea some NPCs need no stats nor explanation for their powers and the PCs should not have access to them.

                5. As you note VtM is not D&D. You may find lowering your PC generation "appealing" because of the potential power it grants but the only way to lower one's generation is through diablerie and that act is meant to be a lot more menaingful and have far reaching consequences than increasing one's "level". Again a ST may wish to allow PCs to lower their generation but that is meant to be story material (or even chronicle material) with the PCs playing cleverly to defeat their opponents and have a chance of diablerizing them (or not, diablerie means you devour one's soul along with its blood... which is one of the most evil and inhuman acts a PC may do and a decent ST should make such an act have consequences. Mitigating them depends on how cleverly the players do their job).

                6. in the Storytelling System what matters is the story. If the ST wants to tell Story which would be wrecked by a certain power the ST has all the right to deny access to said power. That said the ST should give his players an idea about what to expect so they don't waste resources when they build their PCs.

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                • #23
                  And you guys want to put conditioning on the level of "plot device" and methuselah powers....


                  V5 is not VTM

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Draconis View Post

                    Do you really expect PCs to be learning ninth- and tenth-level powers in your games? I've always considered those to be a waste of precious wordcount, which could have instead been devoted to things your average PC could actually get.
                    They still need mechanics "Plot Device" is lazy without guidelines and examples of what is the correct power level.

                    Also Elder and methusaleah games across multiple eras are a thing.


                    https://www.deviantart.com/cicerondixit/gallery

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                    • #25
                      In prior editions, the players don't have to spend xp when they gain backgrounds like retainers. This is a v5 thing.

                      And in v5 dont will exist any level 6+ power.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Leandro16 View Post

                        They still need mechanics "Plot Device" is lazy without guidelines and examples of what is the correct power level.

                        Also Elder and methusaleah games across multiple eras are a thing.
                        Having run a whole chronicle of ages starting from 1197 and concluding with Gehenna I can attest such games do indeed exist. That said, such games don't particularly need extravagant mechanics to allow players to deal with Antediluvians sword in hand. The whole chronicle IS the sword the players need to learn to wield in order to suceed, and of course the ST needs to provide the necessary tools for the PCs to have a chance to triumph. Simply wanting to cut down the Antes and their childer does not work and was not supported by the game long before V5 was a thing.

                        Edit: saying that stuff like antes and their most potent childer need stats and mechanics is like saying having archspheres up to level 10 is a good thing. Now you have Prime 10 and can "create universe"... what do you do with that power in play?
                        Last edited by Haquim; 03-25-2020, 01:38 PM.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Haquim View Post

                          Having run a whole chronicle of ages starting from 1197 and concluding with Gehenna I can attest such games do indeed exist. That said, such games don't particularly need extravagant mechanics to allow players to deal with Antediluvians sword in hand. The whole chronicle IS the sword the players need to learn to wield in order to suceed, and of course the ST needs to provide the necessary tools for the PCs to have a chance to triumph. Simply wanting to cut down the Antes and their childer does not work and was not supported by the game long before V5 was a thing.
                          V5 lack of proper mechanics to represent his own fluff is a failed game design not a bonus
                          Does Mithras sound like a blood god?
                          Or Helena?

                          Previous versions of the game while being way far from perfect to be honest had inbetween power levels and example of what blood gods are suposed to do allowing a coterie of meths or good jyhad players to kill them in a way that sounded plausible.Vitel for example was right in searching the nuclear codes as they can kill antes even in the Gehena suplement where they where at their peak and also let´s note that until 3rd/revised edition LaSombra and Tzimisce were dead same with Troile and Ventrue.

                          Originally posted by Haquim View Post
                          Edit: saying that stuff like antes and their most potent childer need stats and mechanics is like saying having archspheres up to level 10 is a good thing. Now you have Prime 10 and can "create universe"... what do you do with that power in play?
                          I have actually played an archmage in Mage the Awakening who are even more powerful than those of the Ascension thanks to the Imperial Misteries (Amazing supplement) and I had a lot of fun and political intrigue dealing with ways to circunvent the pax magica and attain the quintaessence nedeed perform a ritual to resurrect a fallen supernal god , it isnt about being powerful but about having an adversary or a realistic problem that you may not be able to overcome.

                          NOTE:V5 actually has good ideas , I have even implemented a hunger homebrew on my games , it is the execution of them what sucks.


                          https://www.deviantart.com/cicerondixit/gallery

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Leandro16 View Post

                            V5 lack of proper mechanics to represent his own fluff is a failed game design not a bonus
                            Does Mithras sound like a blood god?
                            Or Helena?

                            Previous versions of the game while being way far from perfect to be honest had inbetween power levels and example of what blood gods are suposed to do allowing a coterie of meths or good jyhad players to kill them in a way that sounded plausible.Vitel for example was right in searching the nuclear codes as they can kill antes even in the Gehena suplement where they where at their peak and also let´s note that until 3rd/revised edition LaSombra and Tzimisce were dead same with Troile and Ventrue.
                            Statwise Mithras NEVER was a "blood god" nor was Helena (which was CONSIDERABLY weaker than Menelaus btw). They were powerful but not impossible to deal with given time and preparation.
                            As far as I'm concerned "blood gods" are creatures older than Mithras, Helena, Menelaus and the like. Creatures that were active during the Second City, the likes of Samiel, Troile (the childer of Brujah), Kaias Koine, Ur Shulgi, the Baali progenitors... such creatures I leave unstatted. Mithras and the like... can be dealt with (maybe).

                            IIRC some antediluvians were rumored to be dead but it was not a stated fact they actually were (well, the red death trilogy aside, but that horrible mess was removed from canon, fortunately).

                            I have actually played an archmage in Mage the Awakening who are even more powerful than those of the Ascension thanks to the Imperial Misteries (Amazing supplement) and I had a lot of fun and political intrigue dealing with ways to circunvent the pax magica and attain the quintaessence nedeed perform a ritual to resurrect a fallen supernal god , it isnt about being powerful but about having an adversary or a realistic problem that you may not be able to overcome.

                            NOTE:V5 actually has good ideas , I have even implemented a hunger homebrew on my games , it is the execution of them what sucks.
                            Interesting. I have the suplement and I like it, but I wouldn't go as far as to claim MtAw archmages are more powerful than those of MtAs. The suplement provides a system for playing archmage which was never really done in MtAs, being able to create a universe is pretty powerful, and in MtAs you "just need" to have Prime10, while in MtAw you need lots of Quintessence and to cheat or defeat creatures as powerful or more powerful tahn you are.

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