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[Revised] : ZOMG, obfuscate conundrums again!

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  • [Revised] : ZOMG, obfuscate conundrums again!

    Yes, the horse may be dead, but can it hide?


    A: Can Obfuscate 5 overpower Obfuscate 3?
    B: Can Obfuscate 5 extend mask of a thousand faces (MOTF) to include others through Cloak the gathering (CTG)?
    C: Can you stack multiple Obfuscate powers?


    A:

    Some real life (hah, see what I did there) examples :

    Player 1 has Obfuscate 3
    Player 2 has Obfuscate 5

    Player 1 uses MOTF to look like Brad Pitt.
    Player 2 then uses CTG to have him become unseen

    Does Player 1 disappear?

    Obfuscate being a power that affects observers' minds, I would say that the power of Player 2 with mastery of Obfuscate 5 would overpower Player 1's Obfuscate.

    B:

    now consider the following :

    CTG raw says "The immortal may use ANY Obfuscate power upon those nearby as well as upon himself, if he wishes" (my emphasis)
    also : "He may bestow any single Obfuscate power at a given time to the group" (group in this case being one other player and not himself)
    Is CTG a single power or is it just a more powerful execution of the other Obfuscate powers? RAW kinda suggests the latter.

    Can player 2 extend MOTF to others?

    Player 1 uses MOTF to look like Brad Pitt.
    Player 2 thanks to CTG makes player 1 look like Marty Feldman.

    Of course player 1 is oblivious to this and still thinks he looks the bee's knees.

    or

    Player 1 uses unseen presence to become, well, unseen.
    Player 2 use MOTF to make people think Player 1 is Marty Feldman.

    Does Player 1 become visible?

    I would say yes, since Player 2's mastery of Obfuscate > Player 1's


    C:

    Stacking Obfuscate powers :

    Turn 1 : Player 2 uses MOTF to look like Brad Pitt (remains obscured indefinitely unless he wishes to be seen, raw, so it's not like he needs to sustain the power)

    Turn 2 : Player 2 uses MOTF to Marty Feldmanize Player 1

    He's only using one discipline per turn.

    Does Player 2 lose his mask? raw suggests no



    Last thought :

    There is no way in-game for the character to know if his obfuscation is successful.

    For roleplaying's sake this roll should be made by the ST, but I agree this may put too much strain on the flow of the game.



    Yes, I know this all resolves to ST's decision, but still would like to have your take on it.
    Last edited by Moriaki; 03-03-2021, 10:14 AM.

  • #2
    I've never allowed Obfuscate to stack, except in the case of elder-level powers. Higher-level discipline rating always trumps.

    Cloak the Gathering basically just modifies lower-level powers to be able to target others. Same as how Vanish from the Mind's Eye basically just modifies Unseen Presence to be activatable while being seen. Mechanically, even though they're lower-level powers they resolve at the character's discipline rating for the purposes of counter-disciplines (most notably Auspex).

    Comment


    • #3
      The only times I've seen Cloak the Gathering use is when the other people covered want to be unseen. So if someone else is using MOTF and another PC uses CTG, then he wasn't seen as well but his own MOTF is still "up." So if the Cloak drops, his mask is still up.

      Now in a situation where the person using MOTF doesn't want to be unseen, I would rule that CTG doesn't affect him. For the same reason I wouldn't allow CTG to be used on some random NPC walking by. I don't play V5 only earlier editions. But in those descriptions, it clearly states that a "protected" person can lose the benefit by acting in any way that would normally cancel the power. So any unwilling participant shouldn't be "protected."

      So using that logic, this is how I would run each scenario.

      A:
      If Player 2 wants to be seen, he remains seen and looks like Brad Pitt. If he does not want to be seen, he disappears. When the Cloak goes away, he still looks like Brad Pitt.

      B:
      Player 2 still looks like Brad Pitt unless he wants to look like Marty Feldman. But if Player 2 accepts the Cloak, I would say it cancels the Brad mask. So when Cloak ends, he would need to reroll MOTF to resume looking like Brad.

      In the other scenario, Player 2 continues to remain unseen unless he desires to be seen as Marty Feldman.

      C:
      Player 2 remains looking like Brad Pitt while Player 1 looks like Marty Feldman, however that is a result of CTG not MOTF. If Player 2 had previously used Obfuscate to appear Unseen, and then tried to use CTG to make someone else look like Marty, he would appear because CTG only allows one power to be used. Multiple people covered by Cloak have to be using the same power, not different powers.


      I could very well be getting this wrong because I am not looking at the books right now and might be missing something. But that is what I would rule unless it's clearly contradicted.

      Comment


      • #4
        Black Fox

        The thing is Obfuscate powers are described as being a fire and forget power.
        You activate it and you don't have to sustain it.

        "C:
        Player 2 remains looking like Brad Pitt while Player 1 looks like Marty Feldman, however that is a result of CTG not MOTF. If Player 2 had previously used Obfuscate to appear Unseen, and then tried to use CTG to make someone else look like Marty, he would appear because CTG only allows one power to be used. Multiple people covered by Cloak have to be using the same power, not different powers.
        "

        Unseen presence states :
        "The vampire remains ignored indefinitely unless someone deliberately seeks him out or he inadvertently reveals himself "

        Using another Obfuscate power (in another turn, mind you) would not reveal him and the Unseen presence is already in effect, so you're not using more than one power if you apply MOTF through CTG.

        If you consider only one obfuscate power can be in effect in an area at one time then any other vamp (of same or higher mastery) in that same area could negate your effect simple by using another Obfuscate power. You're messing with the mind of the observer, either you stack or you replace the effect.

        Assume Player 1 is hidden from sight (Unseen presence)
        Player 2 also uses Unseen presence. His effect would then replace the effect of Player 1 and Player 1 would then become seen again.

        Stacking Obfuscate powers (your own and/or someone else's) is simply unavoidable for the power to work as intended.

        Comment


        • #5
          If you don't like the answers you are getting, do your own thing. But if you already made the determination that Obfuscate stacks in your game, I am not sure why you are asking people if they do.

          Comment


          • #6
            Sure thing Mr Black Fox.
            Sorry for asking.

            Comment

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