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Obtenebration or Oblivion?

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  • #31
    Originally posted by Penelope View Post
    I would keep the distorted reflection part and drop the technology weakness part (it’s way too harsh for a clan that prides itself on keeping up with the times, which includes technological developments).

    So in response, what would you give weakness that scales with their Bane Severity like all the other Clan Banes do? Mechanically, it needs that to be a fair weakness. And the technology weakness is meant (based on what the devs have said elsewhere) to deal with things that are based around any type of mirroring/reflection of the Lasombra metaphysically. So phones don't work well because the mics don't pick them up, things like auto-doors don't pick them up well, touch screens fail to function because it can't detect them. It's all about detecting and metaphysical reflection (to go with the fucked up mirror reflection and the old 'no reflection' non-weakness).

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    • #32
      a real absurdity of the new weakness is that it's so... modern. The Lasombra didnt pop up in the last two hundred years. If you apply this weakness retroactively they effectively had no real weakness more than a couple hundred years ago. Vampife weaknesses are not meant to be for the here and now, they are meant to be as unchanging as the vampires they affect. These weaknesses are meant to be timeless.


      Throw me/White wolf some money with Quietus: Drug Lord, Poison King
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      • #33
        Originally posted by elmerg View Post


        So in response, what would you give weakness that scales with their Bane Severity like all the other Clan Banes do? Mechanically, it needs that to be a fair weakness. And the technology weakness is meant (based on what the devs have said elsewhere) to deal with things that are based around any type of mirroring/reflection of the Lasombra metaphysically. So phones don't work well because the mics don't pick them up, things like auto-doors don't pick them up well, touch screens fail to function because it can't detect them. It's all about detecting and metaphysical reflection (to go with the fucked up mirror reflection and the old 'no reflection' non-weakness).
        It’s just way too harsh the way it is. Showing up all blurry in mirrors, photos and videos is bad enough.


        “No one holds command over me. No man, no god, no Prince. Call your damn Hunt. We shall see who I drag screaming down to hell with me.” The last Ahrimane says this when Mithras calls a Blood Hunt against her.

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        • #34
          Originally posted by Spencer from The Hills View Post
          One could argue that motion sensors wouldn't pick up Hollow Mekhet or Ultraviolet vampires, but I think that they would work for V5 Lasombra; electronic detection systems can sense them, it just gets messed up in some way.
          yeah, that's my undertsanding of it

          if motion sensors didn't pick them up AT ALL, I imagine they wouldn't trigger alarams or traps,
          drones and terminators would be visually impaired against them etc...did Lasombra just win the ascension war? ._.


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          • #35
            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
            a real absurdity of the new weakness is that it's so... modern. The Lasombra didnt pop up in the last two hundred years. If you apply this weakness retroactively they effectively had no real weakness more than a couple hundred years ago. Vampife weaknesses are not meant to be for the here and now, they are meant to be as unchanging as the vampires they affect. These weaknesses are meant to be timeless.
            *sigh*...lasombra usually get an additional weakness in Dark Ages on top of the reflection thing and sun damage,
            in Revised DA and V20 DA they get pained from bright lights. and no, it's not there in the modern nights books, only in DA...not that I know what could constitute a bright light in the middle ages

            that said, even if they didn't get special weaknesses, how is an unnatural reflection any less a weakness than no-reflection?
            Last edited by Pleiades; 09-16-2020, 05:02 PM.


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            • #36
              So... back to the Disciplines...

              Can I just hate them both equally for being exemplars of the worst of each era's design philosophy?

              Obtenebration is a super-gimmicky power that exists to justify the Lasombra as not just Ventrue that like Obfuscate more. It was made as a ST primary power (along with Vicissitude) to make the Sabbat more freakish, and then had to be revised a bunch of times to actually make it functional in PC hands. And that last part never actually succeeded, partially because it tended to get more stuff even as they tried to rebalance the core powers (lets give it rituals instead of having the Lasombra practice blood magic like everyone else!).

              Oblivion is completely overloaded with four powers for most levels, and secondary powers that are gated by individual primary powers. Why does Blood Sorcery get as many rituals as you can come up with, but Ceremonies are restricted so specific powers? It isn't compressing two similar Disciplines into one, or getting rid of a gimmick Discipline by making it one or two Amalgams, it's basically just saying that shadow-manipulators can't be necromancers, and necromancers can't be shadow-manipulators for some weird reason; also you only get too really pick one of a handful of styles of necromancy no matter what. Instead of streamlining, it's just punitively restricting with a Stain generating cherry on top.

              This is exactly why the 13 Clans should have been put into the core book in the first place. People have been talking for literal decades about the painfully more obvious option: combine Obfuscate and Obtenebration. Obfuscate was already a fairly shaky Discipline before V5 in managing to fill out five powers. It really just has two powers: hide from senses and look like someone else. Everything else is just an upgrade to those. V5 didn't solve that as it essentially does the exact same thing but you have to pick which upgrades you get. Combining the two gets you a more well rounded shadowy power that aids in stealth or intimidation, with some Amalgams for the more strange Lasombra powers (Arms and Form probably).

              If what to do with Obtenebration was being considered as all the main Clan Disciplines were being reworked, the "gee Necromancy has a lot of stuff already in it, maybe Obten should go somewhere else?" factor would have been way easier to see.

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              • #37
                Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

                People have been talking for literal decades about the painfully more obvious option: combine Obfuscate and Obtenebration. Obfuscate was already a fairly shaky Discipline before V5 in managing to fill out five powers. It really just has two powers: hide from senses and look like someone else. Everything else is just an upgrade to those. V5 didn't solve that as it essentially does the exact same thing but you have to pick which upgrades you get.
                Potence literally just did one thing, make you stronger. Dominate just had you tell people what to do and how to think. Obfuscate hiding from senses and looking like someone else was entirely in line with what the other common disciplines did, and there was no shortage of creative things you could do with these 'simple' disciplines. Simplicity is a good thing. Creativity is a good thing.
                (obtenebration has 1/2/4 that might go with obfuscate, but 2 is sketchy with the princibles of how obfuscate is supposed to work 3 and 5 certainly do not work with the discipline; who exactly was clamoring for the merger? Total news to me)
                V5 powers have abandoned simplicity and cut down creativity; I can't use the strength of potence any way I like, I have to use it for absurdly specific applications and all creative options are gone.

                Obtenebration was a cool power; it allowed for dramatic entrances, it let you communicate through shadows, it let you smother everything in a black smokescreen, it let you covertly asphyxiate weak mortals, it'll let you recreate your favourite Hen.... nevermind.
                It'll let you explore the Eldritch mysteries of the void, help your crippled character walk, act edgy, juxtapose your faith and goodness against.... It's a fun power.
                Last edited by MyWifeIsScary; 11-24-2020, 09:38 AM.


                Throw me/White wolf some money with Quietus: Drug Lord, Poison King
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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Pleiades View Post
                  Obtenebration is a super-gimmicky power that exists to justify the Lasombra as not just Ventrue that like Obfuscate more.
                  Strongly disagree with that, can't say better than MyWifeIsScary.

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                  • #39
                    trueann you quoted the wrong person


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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Pleiades View Post
                      trueann you quoted the wrong person
                      I meant, disagree with Heavy Arms that Obtenebration is a super-gimmicky power, and MyWifeIsScary described its usefulness exhaustively.

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                      • #41
                        Lasombra would rock as a Dominate+potence+obfuscate clan. They don't need 'justification' to work that set of abilities, and they'd play as much like Nosferatu or Malkavians as they would be like Ventrue with that powerset. And the Mindset of Lasombra is completely different to that of Old-money Ventrue. Obtenebration is not 'justification' for lasombra, Obtenebration, like vicissitude, is a really cool power in it's own right that the writers thought worthy of inclusion. It can be a tool, or a profound mystic art your character can be wrapped up in. It works. You just sound ignorant of the Clan.


                        Throw me/White wolf some money with Quietus: Drug Lord, Poison King
                        There's more coming soon. Pay what ya want.

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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                          Potence literally just did one thing, make you stronger. Dominate just had you tell people what to do and how to think. Obfuscate hiding from senses and looking like someone else was entirely in line with what the other common disciplines did, and there was no shortage of creative things you could do with these 'simple' disciplines. Simplicity is a good thing. Creativity is a good thing.
                          So, once you learned Unseen Presence, did you ever bother using Cloak of Shadows again? No. That's the problem. Unseen Presence does everything Cloak of Shadows does, but better.

                          It's not like Dominate where Command is still useful as an instant action where the higher level powers are slower.

                          You're also going far beyond the criticism of Obfuscate. I never said Obfuscate is a bad power, but rather it was written in a fashion that really struggles to fill out five dots of powers, as such stretch it to nine powers in V5 only made that worse, while Obtenebration was sitting right there to act as a better use of the V5 design paradigm over shoving three Necromancy Paths and Obtenebration into one giant messy Discipline.

                          Obfuscate in pre-V5 is a kick-ass power in the right hands, but that doesn't stop it from having some serious speedbumps to it. It's not about simplicity, or creativity, or any of that vague buzzword stuff. It's about a simple fact that if Obfuscate 1 become obsolete as Obfuscate 2, and 2 become so at 4... which is bad design born of Obfuscate being envisioned too narrowly in its beginning. V5 could have addressed this, but didn't.

                          who exactly was clamoring for the merger? Total news to me
                          People have been talking about the massive bloat of VtM Disciplines since 2e. In discussions of Disciplines to merge to cut down on the total number Obfuscate and Obtenebration were always popular suggests generally coming right after Protean and Serpentis, probably because it's an easier suggestion that dealing with Dominate, Presence, Dementation, and Chimistry into less than four mind control/manipulation Disciplines which was generally another popular line of thought.

                          It's a fun power.
                          Most gimmicky powers are.

                          That's sort of the point... gimmick powers are flashy but lacking in substance.

                          Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                          Lasombra would rock as a Dominate+potence+obfuscate clan.
                          If they'd been a core Clan from the beginning it's probably what they would have gotten. V5 missed a great chance to make them this.

                          They don't need 'justification' to work that set of abilities, and they'd play as much like Nosferatu or Malkavians as they would be like Ventrue with that powerset.
                          "Should" doesn't matter much to how things happened. Obtenebration was created to make the Lasombra the "dark" reflections of that Ventrue as the social Clan of the Sabbat with Dominate and spooooky shadow powers. Everything since then has been trying to make them more functional as a playable Clan. Liking how the Lasombra are in V20 doesn't change their origins.

                          You just sound ignorant of the Clan.
                          Nope, just not ignorant of how long it took them to turn into the Clan that's actually fun to play and has a distinct personality.

                          Originally posted by trueann View Post
                          Strongly disagree with that, can't say better than MyWifeIsScary.
                          Gimmicky and useful aren't mutually exclusive things. If my complaint was that Obtenebration was weak... then all the talk about what you can do with it would mean more.

                          But you're right, that you can't say it better than the first thing brought up, "it allowed for dramatic entrances."

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                          • #43
                            where were lasombra and obtenebration first introduced?


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                            • #44
                              World of Darkness, 2nd Edition?


                              Jade Kingdom Warrior

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                              • #45
                                The Lasombra were introduced in VtM 1e core without any rules (as were the Tzimisce).

                                Obtenebration was, like Vicissitude (IIRC my 1e books here properly) introduced with vague write ups for Sabbat antagonists in the 1e ST Handbook.

                                Obtenebration was fully introduced as we know it in the 2e Players Guide to the Sabbat (one of the first 2e supplements).

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