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  • #16
    I actually do agree that you're probably being too heavy handed with the Sphere assignments.

    But in the end, everyone agrees it's a Master level effect with that impact of base difficulty, and the number of successes you need isn't based in the level of the Spheres used, but what the impact of the spell is.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
      At least pre-V5, thin-bloods aren't actually tied to any given Generation. A 4th Gen could develop it, while a 14th might not. It's just a condition that tends to show up more the higher the Generation of the era is, and more in the highest Generations by those standards. Long enough ago 10th Gens were very high Gen vampires and prone to being thin-bloods, and being 11th or 12th Gen would have the effects of V20 flaws for the higher Generations.
      Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

      The curse isn't as simple as just diluting with distance from the progenitor, as there is also an odd strengthening of the former weakest as a new weakest takes their place.
      Eh, You're correct on that front, but I think it's be fair to say that since thin bloods 100% show up at the "Current" thinnest generation depending on era, then the curse at that time is weak enough to dispel on that individual. At least until it gathers enough strength to "Bounce back" like it started to in beckets jyhad diary.

      I would also still argue that the curse is at least partially weakened by generation considering that the amount of power a vampire can draw from it weakens with generation. Then again, Generation may or may not be a curse from caine, which is weird because that implies caine can strengthen or weaken the power of God, but noddism also says he wasn't supposed to "spread" vampirism in the first place, so maybe spreading it weakens the power of the curse enough to control it in other people?

      How vampirism works isn't really clear. I'm just going to go with the generation thing and say it works that way because that's what fits the paradigm of the mage who invented it.

      Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
      In any case, there's still a lot of people that would feel like outright curing the curse - even in just an individual target - is about fighting the curse itself, not the strength or weakness of how it impacts the vampire the mage seeks to help.


      I disagree. Partly because True Magick depends on paradigm to the point that the spheres themselves are hinted at just being a popular paradigm rather than a fundamental aspect of the universe like mages thing they are.

      Partly because vampires have other options for cures that don't involve curing every vampire ever. In older editions, one of the possible rewards for achieving golconda was becoming human again and in 1st edition, it was Easy enough for Any vampire to do it. In 1st edition, the theme of golconda at the time was to show that vampires as a whole were actively Choosing to be what they are when salvation was literally one door over.

      So I have zero issue with players having access to becoming human again. I appreciate the idea that vampires actively Choose to hold onto damnation for the sake of temporal power.

      Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post
      Okay first, you are creating life, as the original life is gone in nearly all vampires. Once living cells have died, they break down quickly, and evidence from multiple books, including the Jyhad diary, suggests that DNA breaks down after the embrace in most cases. Thin-bloods of a higher generation are an exception here so I could see Life 3 being used instead as the DNA is actually preserved in them.
      Why wouldn't the DNA of other vampires also be preserved? They are locked into the moment they were embraced after all. That's why they can't get tattoos or new scares without the assistance of blood magic.

      Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post
      Second, Time and Matter 5 is needed to change the body to state in which it was before the embrace. Unless this is right after the embrace, the body quickly breaks down DNA and removes all non blood related liquids. Matter 5 is to alter the properties of the body into a living form, and give them more then just blood to work with. Matter 3 is just changing matters form and such, you can't breath life into it at that level. So you are in fact creating new matter, or altering existing matter into how it was before. Accurate knowledge of Anatomy might actually remove the need for time, otherwise Time 5 is needed still.
      I'd say all of what you said is subject to paradigm.

      If you mage is a hardcore technocrat that has a heavy enfaces of some permutation of modern science as the source of their paradigm sure, but I could 100% see a shaman getting away with lower sphere requirements.

      Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post
      Entropy 4 or 5 is especially needed to undo the fabrics of the original curse/infection. If the original form of the curse was from a god, then this is very much needed. Ultimately this one is the more subjective of the spheres needed so I could give you that one.
      You could also just do that with prime 5. One of prime's central abilities is being able to unweave the magic of Any sphere. You don't need entropy to unweave curses, just prime.

      Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post
      The high number of successes, 20, is needed is because, vampirism is suppose to be impossible to cure! All vampires are supposedly vampires forever, and their own hope is often rumors and conjecture. The fact a mage can do it, doesn't change the fact that it's still close to impossible even if there is no god involved. Now that said, High generation thin-bloods would likely require less successes...maybe.

      Ultimately, M20 is complicated and mind numbing. The answer is yes if you ask can a mage do it, but it'll spark debate and hours of research on all sides. I will stand by the 20 minimum successes needed, as vampires should be almost impossible to cure. I'll also stand by Life 5 at least with my spheres. Everything else is subjective, tends to be the problem with mage.
      Again, I disagree with the premise that vampirism is impossible to cure. I also think there's more narrative merit to making it easier to cure than the opposite.

      A character that has to sit down to question whether they Want to be human again after tasting the power inherent to being a vampire or confront the fact that they Can leave, but they Choose not to, is an interesting character. More on the point, it's a character that still fits with the themes of person al horror when they have to face the fact that being a vampire Is Not what makes them a monster.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Prometheas View Post
        Eh, You're correct on that front, but I think it's be fair to say that since thin bloods 100% show up at the "Current" thinnest generation depending on era, then the curse at that time is weak enough to dispel on that individual.
        It's not 100%. The 14th and 15th Generation Flaws do not have to be taken with the Thin-blooded Flaw. Being true to the setting means you should in most cases, but the PCs are exceptional, and being a non-thin-blood 15th Gen can be one form of being such.

        I would also still argue that the curse is at least partially weakened by generation considering that the amount of power a vampire can draw from it weakens with generation.
        The point of contention, in the end, is why should this even matter?

        To go back to the fire example:

        If a mage is trying to put out a fire by removing all the oxygen from the room to deny the fire fuel, does it matter how strong the fire is?

        Because that's what a lot of people view this situation as. You disagree. OK. But the "it doesn't matter how strong the fire is, you're dealing with the oxygen regardless," camp is largely there to keep cures to vampirism and other such things rare and difficult... even for the high Gen or thin-blooded. It's better for the setting for undoing other supernaturals to not be done easily.

        Since you can set it up either way, what's the benefit of letting mages more easily cure vamprism?

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        • #19
          Both are simultaneously right and wrong.

          The core point of the matter, like it or not, has nothing to do with metaphysics (and they have a lot of grey areas), it has to do with a simple OoC fact: we're talking about undoing a core splat.

          First, that means you can't just argue Paradigm for everything here because two distinct sets of metaphysics are at play and none is more canon than the other. This is crossover, and Mage simply can't trump everything else. Neither does Vampire. Instead the needs of the chronicle will define which is more or less right and where.

          Second, that means the answer has further consequences for the game and that's the reason to not have a single, well defined answer to the question. As possibilities for an ST to valuate and for characters to look into both are valid, as a definitive answer in a discussion about the game and not about MY (or yours) table, both are stupid.

          Is it better to have the Curse easy to lift? Maybe. It works for some. It doesn't for others. That's it.

          What we can objectively say about the matter is:

          1 - This is a Master level of difficulty. At least one Sphere will be at 5, although most propositions over the years list at least two or three;

          2 - It involves Prime, as you need to deal with some form of magic and a specialized form of Tass (Vitae);

          3 - It need Matter and Life. One because you're targeting a corpse, the other because you'll infuse it with life;

          4 - It usually does state Time and Entropy in the spell and it makes sense. Time because this corpse isn't a viable body anymore, you're trying to revert it to a previous state (and not just create a completely new life out of it), Entropy because you have to break stasis, this corpse is already a living übber Entropy effect;

          5 - It requires a lot of successes. It may or may not have other story requirements;

          6 - Whatever the reason, it was never done before. No matter how easy you think it should be, no one ever succeeded, or if did, this was so thoroughly forgotten as to be moot. By canon it isn't a thing yet, despite not being necessarily impossible.

          After considering all of those points, whatever the ST want goes. Paradigm may play a heavy role here, or may be utterly irrelevant as the metaphysics of the Curse itself take precedence. Prime is probably at 5, but any other Sphere will depend a lot on how the ST understand those matters and wants to apply them. Personally I'd say a good starting point is Prime 5, then another 5 between Life, Time and Entropy with the others at 3 or 4 (Life should be at least 4, because you're targeting a complex life), Matter a solid 2.

          Originally posted by Prometheas View Post
          I'd say successes required should be (16 subtracting the vampires generation) squared
          Are you sure? I mean, are you really sure that exponential requirements are a good idea?

          Because your proposal works like that, before accounting for age or Thin Blood:

          Generation - Number of Successes (Boldened the generations available for starting characters)
          15th - 1 success
          14th - 4 successes
          13th - 9 successes
          12th - 16 successes
          11th - 25 successes
          10th - 36 successes
          9th - 49 successes
          8th - 64 successes

          7th - 81successes
          6th - 100successes
          5th - 121successes
          4th - 144successes
          3rd - 169successes

          It is easy to miss how fast exponential sequences grow.


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          • #20
            I do actually think that Prometheas would approve of that spread based on the posts so far: High Gen is a weak curse that's easily undone, while low Gen is a strong curse of epic difficulty to cure.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
              The point of contention, in the end, is why should this even matter?

              To go back to the fire example:

              If a mage is trying to put out a fire by removing all the oxygen from the room to deny the fire fuel, does it matter how strong the fire is?
              It's up to paradigm at that point. Maybe the ritual was made in the time of pillars and foundation, making it incompatible with sphere magic? It's up in the air.

              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
              Because that's what a lot of people view this situation as. You disagree. OK. But the "it doesn't matter how strong the fire is, you're dealing with the oxygen regardless," camp is largely there to keep cures to vampirism and other such things rare and difficult... even for the high Gen or thin-blooded. It's better for the setting for undoing other supernaturals to not be done easily.

              Since you can set it up either way, what's the benefit of letting mages more easily cure vamprism?
              I'm confused by your point? The way you made it sound with removing the oxygen would be Easier than putting out a fire based in it's size and heat. Based on your first point, I originally thought you were arguing against lower gen vampires needing so many successes compared to high gens.

              Now that I know you're arguing for the opposite, I think your fire argument kind of defeats itself?

              If a mage is able to deal with the oxygen or the fire depending on their paradigm, why wouldn't there be mages who go the easier route or comes up with their own solution entirely like making a fire extinguisher?

              As for letting mages more easily cure vampirism, I don't see what you mean?

              Besides not personally thinking there should be people playing mages in a vampire game, coming across a Master mage should, by definition, be as rare as finding a Methusela. I could 100% see a Methusela NPC curing a "lesser" vampire as a reward/punishment without it breaking the themes of the game considering they're supposed to be plot devices at that point anyway.

              The way everyone is talking about it is like they're having PCs running around as methusela or with PCs having a couple pet NPC methusela when everyone else is an ancilla. It really shouldn't even be a thing that comes up even in most mage games.

              Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
              Both are simultaneously right and wrong.

              The core point of the matter, like it or not, has nothing to do with metaphysics (and they have a lot of grey areas), it has to do with a simple OoC fact: we're talking about undoing a core splat.

              First, that means you can't just argue Paradigm for everything here because two distinct sets of metaphysics are at play and none is more canon than the other. This is crossover, and Mage simply can't trump everything else. Neither does Vampire. Instead the needs of the chronicle will define which is more or less right and where.

              Second, that means the answer has further consequences for the game and that's the reason to not have a single, well defined answer to the question. As possibilities for an ST to valuate and for characters to look into both are valid, as a definitive answer in a discussion about the game and not about MY (or yours) table, both are stupid.

              Is it better to have the Curse easy to lift? Maybe. It works for some. It doesn't for others. That's it.

              What we can objectively say about the matter is:

              1 - This is a Master level of difficulty. At least one Sphere will be at 5, although most propositions over the years list at least two or three;

              2 - It involves Prime, as you need to deal with some form of magic and a specialized form of Tass (Vitae);

              3 - It need Matter and Life. One because you're targeting a corpse, the other because you'll infuse it with life;

              4 - It usually does state Time and Entropy in the spell and it makes sense. Time because this corpse isn't a viable body anymore, you're trying to revert it to a previous state (and not just create a completely new life out of it), Entropy because you have to break stasis, this corpse is already a living übber Entropy effect;

              5 - It requires a lot of successes. It may or may not have other story requirements;

              6 - Whatever the reason, it was never done before. No matter how easy you think it should be, no one ever succeeded, or if did, this was so thoroughly forgotten as to be moot. By canon it isn't a thing yet, despite not being necessarily impossible.

              After considering all of those points, whatever the ST want goes. Paradigm may play a heavy role here, or may be utterly irrelevant as the metaphysics of the Curse itself take precedence. Prime is probably at 5, but any other Sphere will depend a lot on how the ST understand those matters and wants to apply them. Personally I'd say a good starting point is Prime 5, then another 5 between Life, Time and Entropy with the others at 3 or 4 (Life should be at least 4, because you're targeting a complex life), Matter a solid 2.
              A lot of good points.

              On number 6, let's not forget that the lore for Mage states a mage capable of creating a human from nothing hasn't existed on earth for hundreds/thousands of years(can't find the exact source so going off memory). Doing so requires Life 5, Mind 5, and Spirit 5 to make the body/mind/soul and a another sphere(Prime, Correspondence, Matter, Time) at 3 to be used as fuel in conversion.

              There just might not exist a mage on earth currently that knows the required spheres under for their paradigm to make such a vampire-to-human spell. Mages are supposed to one of the rarest if not The Rarest splat after all.

              Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
              Are you sure? I mean, are you really sure that exponential requirements are a good idea?

              Because your proposal works like that, before accounting for age or Thin Blood:

              Generation - Number of Successes (Boldened the generations available for starting characters)
              15th - 1 success
              14th - 4 successes
              13th - 9 successes
              12th - 16 successes
              11th - 25 successes
              10th - 36 successes
              9th - 49 successes
              8th - 64 successes

              7th - 81successes
              6th - 100successes
              5th - 121successes
              4th - 144successes
              3rd - 169successes

              It is easy to miss how fast exponential sequences grow.
              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
              I do actually think that Prometheas would approve of that spread based on the posts so far: High Gen is a weak curse that's easily undone, while low Gen is a strong curse of epic difficulty to cure.
              Pretty much as Heavy Arms said, The exponential growth is intentional.

              I also think age may probably be a factor(depending on how ST wants to run it), but I think adding at least +1 success required for every century of life would also stop the ritual from being used to un-vampire well establish characters.
              Last edited by Prometheas; 01-05-2022, 10:07 PM.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Prometheas View Post
                There just might not exist a mage on earth currently that knows the required spheres under for their paradigm to make such a vampire-to-human spell.
                Indeed, that's why I stated it as an objective fact, but on the most basic terms possible.

                The reason why no Mage ever did (that we know of) is up to the ST. Canonically, though, none did.

                And in addition to that consideration, Under a Red Sign establishes canonically that there are Mages trying and they have a chance at succeeding, but with a lot of caveats as per the book. Officially, though, they didn't succeeded yet (or so it seems).

                Originally posted by Prometheas View Post
                Pretty much as Heavy Arms said, The exponential growth is intentional.
                I have no problem with your concept by itself and with the first two or three lines for it. But once a Neonate starts building rapidly beyond 10 successes I think this is too out of hand. Or, put another way, it is stating that while 15th and 14th Gens are easy for a Master, 11th (still pretty weak and a number of Neonates are here) is an epic feat and lower than that is impossible in all but name. It also implies that this magic was impossible in the past and only becomes feasible as Generations get lower.

                While this can be your intent, I think you could consider the effects of either going for multiplication from a similar starting point (not by 2, necessarily), or to use some other frame of reference, like Blood Pool or Blood/Turn expenditure (that would have a more stable result for the more accessible Generations).

                Or, on the other hand...

                Originally posted by Prometheas View Post
                I also think age may probably be a factor
                Personally I prefer age being the primary factor, maybe inverting to have a simple addition for Generation and exponential growth for age.


                ​About Heavy Arms argument, I think he simply sees no point in the difficulty growing with Generation and think it should be a flat number above 20, equally hard for all of them, and I see his point. That's what he means with some people seeing any intrusion over the Curse as against the Curse itself regardless of target, so that means basing it off Generation is irrelevant.

                Then, again, the bit about Paradigm not necessarily playing a role. The same way your Paradigm doesn't necessarily give you shortcuts to dismiss another Mage's spell based on how you understand that spell, because it is not your spell, so your own Paradigm shouldn't give you shortcuts to dismiss the Curse, because it isn't your Curse. Or a "simple" law of nature. It is its own supernatural thing.


                Mage isn't nearly as complicated as crossover.


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                • #23
                  Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
                  I have no problem with your concept by itself and with the first two or three lines for it. But once a Neonate starts building rapidly beyond 10 successes I think this is too out of hand. Or, put another way, it is stating that while 15th and 14th Gens are easy for a Master, 11th (still pretty weak and a number of Neonates are here) is an epic feat and lower than that is impossible in all but name. It also implies that this magic was impossible in the past and only becomes feasible as Generations get lower.

                  While this can be your intent, I think you could consider the effects of either going for multiplication from a similar starting point (not by 2, necessarily), or to use some other frame of reference, like Blood Pool or Blood/Turn expenditure (that would have a more stable result for the more accessible Generations).

                  Or, on the other hand...
                  Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
                  Personally I prefer age being the primary factor, maybe inverting to have a simple addition for Generation and exponential growth for age..
                  Sure, I kind of came up with that formula off the top of my head, so I'm 100% open to tweaks.

                  Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
                  ​About Heavy Arms argument, I think he simply sees no point in the difficulty growing with Generation and think it should be a flat number above 20, equally hard for all of them, and I see his point. That's what he means with some people seeing any intrusion over the Curse as against the Curse itself regardless of target, so that means basing it off Generation is irrelevant.

                  Then, again, the bit about Paradigm not necessarily playing a role. The same way your Paradigm doesn't necessarily give you shortcuts to dismiss another Mage's spell based on how you understand that spell, because it is not your spell, so your own Paradigm shouldn't give you shortcuts to dismiss the Curse, because it isn't your Curse. Or a "simple" law of nature. It is its own supernatural thing.


                  Mage isn't nearly as complicated as crossover.
                  I'm not sure that's true with M20 after the release of the "How do You Do That" book.

                  M20 pushes a lot of breaking sphere rules based on Paradigm with that book in particular, where in previous editions a dream speaker and a verbena would require the same spheres as another mage and change the flavor to fit their paradigm( forces effects would use forces, a to a dream speaker the spirits are causing the effect), this book has the opposite. Dream speakers now require the spirit sphere for Every effect under the spirit-do-the-work paradigm and Verbena are able to do things like life-to-prime conversions despite that breaking sphere level rules.

                  M20's paradigm seems to be that the spheres themselves are a paradigm rather than a rules abstraction.

                  Granted, mages stepping on the toes of other splats is nothing new. The infamous "Vampire Lawn-chair" controversy is enough to show that. It's one of the reasons I prefer sorcerers as mage stand-ins for crossovers.

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                  • #24
                    That seems a bit blown out of proportion. The Spirit addition is a side-bar optional rule, and the rational is the Focus can cause a mage to add Spheres that aren't strictly necessary for the effect because it's necessary for their process, not that Focus determines what the base Spheres needed to do something even are.

                    As well, the line between the Spheres as mechanical abstractions and in-universe concepts the characters have perspectives on has always been blurry since 1e.

                    But I'm not sure what's confusing about the oxygen-to-put-out-a-fire thing. Removing all the oxygen from the room as an effect is as hard as removing all the oxygen from the room. It doesn't matter what's in the room with the oxygen. It doesn't matter if the room is empty, if a simple candle will flutter out without fuel, if a bonfire will be extinguished, or if a person will start to suffocate. Focus might impact what a mage needs to do to remove oxygen from the room, but the consequences of the spell don't change the rules of the spell.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                      That seems a bit blown out of proportion. The Spirit addition is a side-bar optional rule, and the rational is the Focus can cause a mage to add Spheres that aren't strictly necessary for the effect because it's necessary for their process, not that Focus determines what the base Spheres needed to do something even are.

                      As well, the line between the Spheres as mechanical abstractions and in-universe concepts the characters have perspectives on has always been blurry since 1e.
                      Bad example I guess.

                      Maybe I'm remembering things with rose-tinted glasses for earlier editions. I'll have to go back to look at the books

                      Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                      But I'm not sure what's confusing about the oxygen-to-put-out-a-fire thing. Removing all the oxygen from the room as an effect is as hard as removing all the oxygen from the room. It doesn't matter what's in the room with the oxygen. It doesn't matter if the room is empty, if a simple candle will flutter out without fuel, if a bonfire will be extinguished, or if a person will start to suffocate. Focus might impact what a mage needs to do to remove oxygen from the room, but the consequences of the spell don't change the rules of the spell.
                      Then maybe I wasn't clear? Taking away oxygen isn't the only way to put out a fire.

                      For example: If the way you're putting out fire is by taking away the thermal energy, then the difficulty would depend on how big the fire is.

                      For another example: If you're putting it out by introducing a new element that either reacts with the oxygen in the air or is a gas heavier than air/suffocates the fire, then the difficulty would depend on the size of the room.

                      For a third example: If instead of the oxygen you eliminate the solid/liquid fuel with something non-flammable or that reacts with the fuel in a way that absorbs heat, then the difficulty would depend on the size/type of flammable substance.

                      That's my point, the difficulty will depend on How the mage goes about casting the spell. Acting like you can only do it one way is like trying to say the only way to put out a fire is by manipulating all the oxygen in the room, which isn't true.

                      The way others in this thread are phrasing it makes it sound like you need to fight the curse of vampirism as a whole and cure the curse of vampirism across the entire world or directly undo the power of god just to cure one person, which I disagree with.

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                      • #26
                        Yes, in Mage, there's frequently more than one way to cause a consequence, and how you go about it will impact all sorts of things.

                        Adding fifty ways to put out a fire is just going to muddy things. The point is that the Mage mechanics, once the parameters of what you're doing are established, don't really care about the knock-on effects (even if the mages themselves certainly do).

                        What people are arguing isn't that you need to cure all vampires globally to cure any vampire, but that curing vampires is like pulling all the oxygen out of the room. It doesn't matter if it's a weak candle of a vampire, or a powerful bonfire of a vampire. The difficulty of the task is contesting the nature of the curse itself, even if just in one individual, and that curse is extremely powerful regardless of its expression in the vampire that happens to be there.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          What people are arguing isn't that you need to cure all vampires globally to cure any vampire, but that curing vampires is like pulling all the oxygen out of the room. It doesn't matter if it's a weak candle of a vampire, or a powerful bonfire of a vampire. The difficulty of the task is contesting the nature of the curse itself, even if just in one individual, and that curse is extremely powerful regardless of its expression in the vampire that happens to be there.
                          Like I said. I disagree that that's the only way to go about doing it or that the nature of the curse really necessitates it.

                          I've also stated that I disagree with the idea that it would undermine vampire's theme's for mages to be capable of curing vampires, so I recognize I'm in the minority here.

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                          • #28
                            OK, so if you go about it some other way, why wouldn't Pattern Bleed kick in and kill the now-former-vampire in a week?

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                              OK, so if you go about it some other way, why wouldn't Pattern Bleed kick in and kill the now-former-vampire in a week?

                              It might. I never said it wouldn't.

                              Granted, don't vampires already suffer from pattern bleed in mage terms? They need for a continuous supply of quintessence to function just like thaumivores do, but luckily have the ability to convert human life-patterns into quintessence to feed themselves.

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                              • #30
                                Mage's think that, but it's not actually how vampires work (a vampire that doesn't drink blood for too long doesn't die).

                                And can we acknowledge that a "cure" for vampirism that in short order kills the subject anyway isn't really a cure? Because really, I have no idea what your point even is now. "There are other ways, but they all suck and don't really do the job" seems a very weird position.

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