Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

[V5] The Sabbat thread

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Erhm.... I'd totally be on board with ghouling a hippo. I was thinking elephant originally but then thought a hippo'd do better in an urban environment.


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

    Comment


    • Also Blood brothers are one of the best bloodlines (at least in V20) and it's a shame they get sidelined for... human centipedes.

      A fun story is to have one group of botched Blood-Brothers retain the ability to embraced, or worse, re-embrace and reshape other vampires into the collective. But I just find the idea of murderous, comedic-relief octoplets a fun one. I've really wanted to play one actually, but you either need half the table on board with it or about ten dots of retainer.


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

      Comment


      • Matthew Dawkins did a non-canon Blood Brothers supplement.

        https://www.storytellersvault.com/pr...Blood-Brothers


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

        Comment


        • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

          Continuing my hypothetical meeting in my head.

          My Wife is Scary, Black Hand Member: And that's why you shouldn't make Vozhd.

          Regular Sabbat: Did you say we should ghoul a hippo?

          MWIS: NO! What the hell are you thinking?

          Regular Sabbat: Fleshcraft two hippos together! With rifles and automatic weapons!
          Animals ghouls as super strong and tough cavalry mounts and attack animals work better than Vozhd, and as a bonus up fanging and clawing them plays into current instinctive attack patterns, rather than making a naked ape learn claws and fangs, you make a dog better at what it naturally wants to do, or a hippo that shrugs off elephant guns bonus points for using Animalism and Viscittitude together.

          Comment


          • But could you make lots and lots of Tremors' jokes?

            I think not.



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

            Comment


            • Yeah, creating Vozhd really isn't that powerful, which is why I've never understood why they made it such a high-level ability. It's one of those things that are really cool looking, but otherwise kinda meh.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                Second, the Nosferatu have always been only nominally members of their sects. Maybe a rare few have fully embraced the ideals of their sect, but they've always been a Clan>Sect group. If the Sabbat took over a town the local Nos would raise a flag, say they're sabbat, and tell the sabbat to stay the fuck out of the underground. If the Camarilla took the town back these local Nos would raise a flag, say they're Camarilla, and then tell the Camarilla to stay the fuck out of the underground. The Nosferatu look out for Nosferatu and Nosferatu alone, they're not going to want to expand their responsibilities on shovelheads, and even the few sectarians among them are going to respect the wishes of the greater clan.
                This brings up an interesting point that the Sabbat is filled with groups who are only nominal members of the sect, but the setting doesn't accurately portray it. To your point, we're originally told that the Nosferatu anti-tribu (who don't even use the term anti-tribu) still have strong bonds with their Camarilla counterparts, though they remain loyal to their sect. That's a strange loyalty which would no doubt be considered traitorous to the rest of the Sabbat. But there's more. They also don't even use the vaulderie among other Nosferatu. And other Sabbat members who want to travel to the Nosferatu lairs need to get permission in advance. This doesn't even sound like they're real members of the Sabbat. This gets ignored somewhat by the Revised metaplot, but lots of things in Revised simply ignored anything that got in the way of their railroad. So what does this mean in practice?

                I would say that it implies the vast majority of the Nosferatu AT stay in packs/covens of just their own clan, and don't practice Sabbat ritae. They likely try to avoid encounters with most other Sabbat. After all, if you disdain using the vaulderie among other Nosferatu, but you partake of it when meeting other Sabbat, you start creating bonds with other people that could overrule your fellowship with your clanmates. No doubt, Nosferatu AT exist who belong to packs of other Sabbat, but this has to create a lot of issues with the clan - what happens if this guy starts revealing clan secrets to his new buddies that put the clan in danger because it makes it sound like they are traitors? So this can't be common, and those who do have to be treated with a deft touch and likely aren't told a lot of information, but kept at a safe distance from all those activities that would put the clan in suspicion.

                This often gets tossed over in games because PCs want to play together, and everyone wants to play the clan of their choice. But if you think about and want to treat it seriously, then it seems the Nosferatu AT's allegiance to the Sabbat is merely nominal. (Which also implies the Nosferatu's allegiance to the Camarilla is also nominal as should be any Nosferatu in the Anarchs).

                To me, this implies that the Nosferatu AT likely hold the original ideals of the Anarch Revolt before the sect started becoming weird, and minimize participation in the various innovations introduced into the Sabbat afterwards. They're probably members of the Loyalist faction.

                But they aren't the only group like that. Historically, the Tremere anti-tribu should be the same. They entered a sect with lots of members that hate them. They're not allowed into any leadership position. They never created shovelheads ("The clan never creates new vampires in times of Jyhad."), but always select new members carefully. We're told they put more importance on clan loyalty than anyone else in the Sabbat. Their usefulness to the Sabbat is in providing magical help, and sharing some of their knowledge with the greater clan.

                All of this implies that for the most part, the Tremere AT kept to themselves. They belong to packs that are essentially their own chantry, and try to minimize the vaulderie shared with others. They engage in political outreach to the other Sabbat members to provide enough Thaumaturgical help and research in order to demonstrate their loyalty, but since magic research is hard, they should be doing this as part of a plan, and don't want to risk someone revealing too much too soon that hurts their collective leverage within the sect. So the number of Tremere AT that belong to other packs should be kept to a minimum - perhaps even done strategically with selected members appointed to do so.

                The Tremere AT made their bed and have to sleep in it, but just to survive in a hostile environment, they have to keep to themselves in order to best use their leverage. I imagine its members on the Path of Honorable Accord have tenets emphasizing loyalty to their clan/House Goratrix.

                I think the Serpents of the Light are in a similar position to the Tremere AT, but they have a lot less enemies though still not trusted. But their participation in the Sabbat is just as opportunistic, and they're mostly concerned with building up their "clan". It doesn't make sense for them to be in packs with others, so most of their packs/covens should be with their own clanmates. The Sabbat made a faustian pact because alliance with the Serpents of the Light allowed the Sabbat to expand to Haiti and the Dominican Republic. And ideologically, the Sabbat wanted to expand their war to the one clan most identified with its antedeluvian founder. However, every year, this alliance probably has less benefits to both side, but a combination of inertia and lack of other options will keep this marriage of convenience.

                The Assamite anti-tribu were pretty much the same, dominating the Black Hand and they likely don't see much distinction between their clan and the Hand. It's probably because they really don't see themselves as the other Sabbat members. The Assamite AT have gone through the most changes of all the clans, as the first and revised edition descriptions contain a lot of contradictions, and I honestly don't know all the changes as a result of the Revised metaplot and V5. But historically they should be seen as a political bloc within the sect, probably the equals of leadership to the Lasombra and Tzimisce, but not through the Bishops and Prisci, but through their domination of the Black Hand.

                The Black Hand does include other clans, but I think the nature of the Assamite AT and their involvement of the Black Hand would basically turn these other people into auxiliary supporters of the Assamite ATs. So the clan doesn't care if its members have vaulderie with them. But I suspect outside the Black Hand, the Assamites stay clear of belonging to packs with other members.

                Then there are the Panders. We know their leader, Joseph Pander, united most if not all of the various Sabbat Caitiff behind him, and through opportunistic politicking forced the rest of the sect to treat them with equality. We're not given much details, but it seems to me that the Panders have a lot of centralized leadership which means most Panders are probably packmates with other Panders, with lots of personal loyalty to Joseph Pander. Their situation also appears precarious to me. The conditions that allowed them to unite and force their demands on the rest of the Sabbat are not eternal. The destruction of Joseph Pander could cause the "clan" to divide or even fall, and their status resort back to what it was before. While fervently loyal to the Sabbat, any decline in their political position within the Sabbat could see their gains reversed.

                For different reasons than the others, the Panders too have to keep mostly among themselves. Too much vaulderie with non-Panders risk destroying that unity and thus dividing the clan. Joseph Pander probably sees this, but a lot of ordinary Panders probably don't. It's probably his charisma alone that keeps the clan together. I imagine he can't convince all the Caitiff out there, but he retains a large core of loyal supporters for his powerbase, and the less loyal or zealous Caitiff effectively coast along on the success of this core group. So there is likely a core group of key Panders who belong to Panders-only packs, and another group that mixes with the rest of the Sabbat.
                ‚Äč
                If you go with the Revised metaplot, the Harbingers and Salubri AT also fit into this category. Their membership is nominal and opportunistic.

                I think the other clans are much more mixed, more part of the Sabbat culture, and less likely to have their own agendas separate from the Sabbat (though still have political conflicts concerning its leadership and goals).

                However, I don't in practice in most chronicles and not in other published material that these distinctions are really made. It's just assumed everyone melds into the typical PC coteries of any concept and any clan goes because we all want to play the game at the same table.

                Interestingly, it can be argued that these self-serving clans made up the core strength of the sect. The Assamite ATs through the Black Hand prevented the sect from being destroyed and leads its war against the Camarilla. The Panders provided the shock troops for their successful crusades in the last half of the 20th century. The Tremere AT provided needed magical support. The Nosferatu AT provided the intelligence they needed. The Serpents of the Light allowed the sect to expand in the Caribbean. Without these forces, the rest of the Sabbat - the real Sabbat - would be in much dire circumstances. The situation doesn't portray the ordinary sect leadership in a good light.

                Comment


                • I wouldn't be surprised if we found out a lot of Serpents of Light defected to the Ministry or have a friendly relationship with the Anarch ones. A lot of the Seprent's backstory is basically the same as the Ministry's writ large.


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

                  Comment


                  • RE: Vozhd

                    It is correct to say that Vozhd have far less utility than "normal" ghouls with automatic weapons, or else ghouls given more "efficient" fleshcrafting enhancements (retractable bone blades on the arms is a personal favorite). No one is arguing that Vozhd are worth the effort. They're really not.

                    That's missing the point entirely. Vozhd exist because Tzimisce WANT to make them. That's the only reason they need.

                    Tzimisce are artists, occultists, scientists, and craftspeople. Their fleshcrafted horrors are made for their own sake. They do it because they can. That they have some application in a crusade is merely an excuse the Tzimisce give for hauling them out to some Camarilla city, or setting up a workshop there. They want an excuse to fleshcraft creatures in large numbers, and show them off to other vampires. They're only weapons in the sense that they can be made to kill. In truth, they're projects. Like a costume for cosplay, Ren-Faire, or historical reenactment, or wargaming models you paint up to field at a games store or tournament.

                    When you exist within a warlike sect - that often only respects a capacity for violence - making monsters for war is not only an avenue for showing off, it's the primary avenue.

                    (Plus, there's nostalgia and tradition. Vozhd were way more effective back before the perfection of gunpowder weapons. Tzimisce have been doing this for millennia. They aren't going to stop just because regular ghouls with guns are more effective. Vampires have never been the most adaptable sort, or the ones most willing to abandon their old ways. Some just miss the days when they could terrorize peasants with obscene horrors.)


                    Comment


                    • The morale destroying effect of seeing what is more or less a shoggoth is something that can't be understated too.


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

                      Comment


                      • The nos have always been portrayed with this idea that a couple will be up on the surface interacting with the sect and essentially become the face of the clan, another couple will very rarely interact with the sect, and the last couple just won't show themselves to other vampires.

                        The Kiasyd, few that they are, trade favours to be left alone. The Harbringers are all elders so they hang out with elders and elders generally don't engage in a good chunk of sabbat shit. The BB aren't considered vampires by the sect, much like the Cam (or at least the Tremere) treat Gargoyles

                        The rest of the clans in the sabbat are all normal members. Sure they may have extra-curricular activities; The Lasombra play court, the Ventrue LARP, the Tzmisce have culture... but they're normal sabbat members. Assamite Sabbat are mostly just regular Sabbat, with a few LARPing as Orthadox Assamites on occasion. The Ravnos are just standard Sabbat. All the freaky subcultures are normal, and it wouldn't be weird for a Tremere anti to praise St.Gustav with the Ventrue or for a Brujah to try and impress the Tzmisce with Tea parties. Perhaps some events are more exclusive than others (Mostly the Courts of Blood, 'cuse lasomba care too much about branding) but it's all very... Sabbat.
                        Last edited by MyWifeIsScary; 04-07-2021, 05:40 PM.


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

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                          The morale destroying effect of seeing what is more or less a shoggoth is something that can't be understated too.
                          I considered mentioning it, too, but ^This.

                          Vozhd aren't the most deadly of weapons in the modern day, but nothing intimidates, terrifies, and demoralizes like a fleshy abomination. Especially one specially crafted to bear the contorted, agonized faces of your enemy's loved ones. (Whether or not you had the people on hand; faking a face is elementary flesh-crafting).


                          Comment


                          • RE: "Real" vs "Fake" Sabbat

                            There was a lot of talk back there about whether vampires who regularly Embrace purposefully or have a strong Clan tradition have any place in the Sabbat.

                            My two cents is the same axiom I've been repeating for years: all else being equal, more options is better than fewer.

                            To me, the Sabbat is not one single thing, even a melting pot of shovelheads or Panders. It's many things. Often mutually contradictory things. It's a loose confederation of factions, unlifestyles, philosophies, and agendas. It's what happens when you take a bunch of groups that all happen to hate the Camarilla, and magically bind them together with blood rituals and dogma.

                            The Sabbat are not just Shovelheads or just Lasombra or just Tzimisce. They're the Moderates and Ultra-Conservatives and Loyalists and Inquisition and Black Hand. They're the Clans (Lasombra and Tzimisce) and the Antitribu and the Panders. They're all the Paths of Enlightement, and those barely on the Path of Humanity. They're the Immoral, the Amoral, those with pretensions of morality, and those who deliberately embrace evil out of pragmatism or spite. They're even the Infernalists, though the sect itself would see those devil-worshipers purged to the last.

                            They are all of these things and more. A big ball of hypocrisy, mutual disdain, compromises, and barely restrained violence. It's a place where the movers and shakers of the sect know that no big confluence of packs or promising crusade could really get going before a load of the assembled masses finish decimating each other (in the original, Roman definition of the word "decimate"). A place where it's honestly a surprise that you can count the number of true civil wars on one hand.

                            The Sabbat, in short, is a big mess. And that's what I like about it. It's what makes it useful as a storytelling engine. You never know what you'll get from the Sabbat when they show up. You'll never be bored.


                            Comment


                            • Hellhounds/MonsterHippos/spiney snakes>>>>Vozhd.

                              It's a big, slow target.
                              would've been outdated just before 1500. An era of gun and spear; Vozhd don't have a chance. NE europe, where the majority of Tzmisce are from if we ignore dracula (and we should) and pay attention to all the Polish/Russian terminology the clan has used. From Poland to Russia, everything's flatter than my career opportunity in china after covid hit. Hills are happiness and that's why we're all depressed here. A big monstrosity mashup of twenty people or so, on such open terrain, is just a target (And in a forest, it's stuck). Hell, even before guns, arrows would do the trick since there's no way you're armouring something that big. Hell again, after thinking about it, this is also a terrible idea in mountainous terrain, or on hills, or in cities, or... it's maybe decent in aquatic environments. Perhaps a lake district?

                              Anyhow they're just fucking dumb no matter what year it is. Just come straight out and tell us it's modern body horror because Tzmisce have degenerated quite a bit in the Sabbat, don't justify it with -it's an ancient practice and used to be super common-. Maybe, like, A Vozhd of five people or less might have practical advantages, and might have been done on a semi-common basis. Anything more than that... it's an art project, not a weapon of war. And the biggest problem with all this is that the game makes it a fucking elder power, whilst I'd put it at 4 Vicissitude and 1 animalism.


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

                              Comment


                              • As someone who's dealt with the Hippo thing. I agree. The Ghouled hippo or even the MUCH WORSE Embraced HIPPO(Which is a constantly wasailing super hippo) is the sort of problem you want to drop on an enemy city. Its not controllable... but.. neither is a pack of shovelheads.

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X