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What Disciplines are "Mental Disciplines" (V20)

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  • What Disciplines are "Mental Disciplines" (V20)

    I know that the three Disciplines considered to be Physical Disciplines are Celerity, Fortitude, and Potence. But I can't find in the V20 core book or through googling which ones are considered Mental Disciplines. I found a few times the core book mentioned that Dominate was a Mental Discipline, but no other references to any others. What defines a Mental Discipline? Does any Discipline that is not considered to be Physical automatically qualify as a Mental Discipline? Or is does it have to do with some other factor like only ones that typically use Willpower in their rolls or are opposed rolls versus the victims Willpower? I originally thought it might have to do with if a Discipline used Mental Attributes in their rolls but if we use Dominate as a guideline, most of Dominate's powers use Social Attributes. And I guess at the end of the day I could ask my Storyteller, but I kind of thought there would be a list of Disciplines considered Mental Disciplines somewhere, since there is a list for the Physical Disciplines.

    Edit: there's also an incomplete list of Mental Disciplines in the Possession power's description (Dominate 5), but the wording of the list implies there are Mental Disciplines that it does not mention which provides credence to the "if it's not a Physical Discipline it's a Mental one" since it mentions so many Disciplines, but what about Disciplines like Protean and Vicissitude. Are they some third category or don't belong to any category?
    Last edited by Catarang; 10-19-2020, 10:31 AM.

  • #2
    The physical Disciplines directly affect a vampires physical capabilities and are often believed to be innate to all vampires.
    They have commonly been viewed as the Disciplines that all Cainites can learn without needing a teacher, edition and individual Storyteller not withstanding.

    I've never heard of a group of Disciplines being described as "Mental Disciplines" in the same context as the three physical ones, but I'd say Auspex is "the" mental Discipline, followed by Dominate and Presence.

    Edit: After consulting Possession in V20 it appears to be a blanket term that covers any Discipline that affects the mental state of an individual or creature in some way, so this would include Animalism, Auspex, Chimerstry, Dementation, Dominate.

    At 5 successes it mentions blood magic Disciplines that have always been thought of as involving study and academia.
    Forcing change through Willpower in Thaumaturgy's case could be viewed as "Mental will" I suppose.
    Necromancy is a little harder to pin down other than being academic in nature.

    Whether you can apply such thinking to other Discipline powers that cloud the mind such as certain Obfuscate powers would be up to Storyteller fiat.

    Another, altogether simpler way of reading it would be any Discipline that you "use your brain, not your body" to invoke.
    In which case the mental Disciplines would be Animalism, Assamite Sorcery, Auspex, Chimerstry, Daimoinon, Dementation, Dominate, Koldunic Sorcery, Mytherceria, Necromancy, Presence, and Thaumaturgy, with everything else being physical.
    Ogham and Temporis straddle a line that cant be resolved with this overly-simplistic division though.
    Last edited by Andreas Rayne; 10-19-2020, 11:16 AM.


    Miley Cyrus is obviously a Nephandi and a Cultists love-child. *Shudders*

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    • #3
      Explicitly, it's Dementation and Dominate.
      Animalism is... a little sketchy because it's about manipulating 'the beast'

      Obfuscate is a mind-trick, but it's not mentioned where dementation is? I don't think that's what it meant.

      Chimestry isn't mental at all. Your illusions are fashioned from a "substance".

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Andreas Rayne View Post
        Another, altogether simpler way of reading it would be any Discipline that you "use your brain, not your body" to invoke.
        In which case the mental Disciplines would be Animalism, Assamite Sorcery, Auspex, Chimerstry, Daimoinon, Dementation, Dominate, Koldunic Sorcery, Mytherceria, Necromancy, Presence, and Thaumaturgy, with everything else being physical.
        Ogham and Temporis straddle a line that cant be resolved with this overly-simplistic division though.
        Would you say Obfuscate is Mental then? And on page 499, it says "Independent ghouls have no Clan restrictions, but if you are creating an independent character, the Story-teller may require you to choose your second dot from among the innate physical Disciplines (Celerity, Fortitude, and Potence)." So would this mean that physical Disciplines are anything that isn't considered a Mental discipline, and "innate physical Disciplines" only refers to Celerity, Fortitude, and Potence?

        Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
        Explicitly, it's Dementation and Dominate.
        Animalism is... a little sketchy because it's about manipulating 'the beast'

        Obfuscate is a mind-trick, but it's not mentioned where dementation is? I don't think that's what it meant.

        Chimestry isn't mental at all. Your illusions are fashioned from a "substance".
        The Dominate 5 power "Possession" states that "Similar to the Animalism power Subsume the Spirit, multiple successes allow the character to utilize some mental Disciplines, noted on the chart below." The chart it refers to mentions Auspex, Chimerstry, Dementation, Dominate, Necromancy, Presence, and Thaumaturgy by name. I believe this makes all of these Disciplines Mental Disciplines by RAW.
        Last edited by Catarang; 10-19-2020, 12:26 PM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Catarang View Post
          The Dominate 5 power "Possession" states that "Similar to the Animalism power Subsume the Spirit, multiple successes allow the character to utilize some mental Disciplines, noted on the chart below." The chart it refers to mentions Auspex, Chimerstry, Dementation, Dominate, Necromancy, Presence, and Thaumaturgy by name. I believe this makes all of these Disciplines Mental Disciplines by RAW.
          The chart only notes Dementation and Dominate as mental manipulation powers. Presence is emotional, and Auspex is sensory. Necromancy, Thaumaturgy, and Chimerstry are all mystical powers.

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          • #6
            I'd definitely include Obfuscate on the list. It's a suppression or alteration of others' perception, not a cloaking device that bends the light around the user.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by tiltowait View Post
              The chart only notes Dementation and Dominate as mental manipulation powers. Presence is emotional, and Auspex is sensory. Necromancy, Thaumaturgy, and Chimerstry are all mystical powers.
              You are correct that it designates Dementation and Dominate as mental manipulation powers, but it says above the chart that the power "allow[s] the character to utilize some mental Disciplines, noted on the chart below." I believe this means that it designates all Disciplines listed on the chart as "mental Disciplines", but you can have a mental Discipline that are powers of emotional/mental/mystical manipulation or are simply sensory powers.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Catarang View Post

                You are correct that it designates Dementation and Dominate as mental manipulation powers, but it says above the chart that the power "allow[s] the character to utilize some mental Disciplines, noted on the chart below." I believe this means that it designates all Disciplines listed on the chart as "mental Disciplines", but you can have a mental Discipline that are powers of emotional/mental/mystical manipulation or are simply sensory powers.
                I would chalk it up to poor wording on WW’s part. No one is going to consider Black Breath a mental power.

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