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  • Some Disciplines questions[V20]

    Hi
    So i am rather new to whole story telling and Vampire system and i am trying to figure somethings out. so i would be bothering you guys for next few days. sorry and thanks in advance.

    My Discipline questions are mostly regarding Auspex. I understand that you can use Auspex to counter Obfuscate and it seems you can use Auspex to counter level 3 Obfuscate as well. however i wasn't able to find anything about this after searching the internet and here so i decided to finally ask.

    Now i presume you can fight Chemistry with Auspex as well, but for now, how does Auspex work against level 3 Obfuscate?do you use second level that allows you to read Auras for this?if so when you use it do the whole Obfuscate illusion is gone for you or is it only gone for the duration of the activation?
    I know you need to have Auspex 3 or 4 in order to break Obfuscate 3, but i always presumed regardless of your Auspex level this is always done by second level Auspex. even if the Obfuscated vampire is only using Unseen Presence.

    Another Auspex related question, you can see the Aura of ghosts with Auspex. how does this work?As i understand ghosts can show themselves in some manner that is obvious their are ghosts. so what is function of Auspex here? does Auspex 2 allow you to see Ghosts that are in hidden and therefore thats the function of seeing Ghost Aura? or perhaps you can see the Aura when they posses a mortal(as some of them can do)?

    Another:When you use Aura reading does that only work for one turn per scene? i mean if player A asks a question and uses Auspex and then he can see player B Aura in next turn(player b turn) will he be able to continue see his Aura for duration of whole conversation? or does it only last for a single turn?i kinda see more success than two rather unnecessarily in this case hence the book states you:"Can detect subtle shifts" with 4 successes and i guess this is only useful if player A keeps asking questions and check how players B Aura shifts each time in reaction.

    Two Dominate questions: i know you need to see the eyes in order for it to work, but how long is the range of this? i always presumed it will need to be in just few meters but seeing how Mass Dominate works in L.A by night i have my doubts.

    Dominate allows you to use a command like Sleep. how does this work?i know under affect of dominate you must do what you are told but actually Sleeping is not something that people can do by choice so how does this work?does the person dominated simply lays down?


  • #2
    Page 142 of the core book details the rules you're looking for quiet well. To summarize it a bit, Auspex can be used to sense hidden supernaturals and pierce illusions. In game terms the Auspex user rolls a Perception + Awareness against the target's Manipulation + Subterfuge, difficulty 7 for both.

    There's extra things when used against Obfuscate and Chimestry, but those are clearly listed on the page. It's under the side bar called Seeing the Unseen can't miss it.


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    • #3
      Btw the side bar on page 152 kinda answers your dominate questions. Effectively you don't really need to see their eyes just need to look them where their eyes should be. Even if the target is blind or pluck their eyes out, dominate can still affect them.

      Also in v20, dominate can make your target sleep as it's a listed example in the v20 dark ages rules. Most likely as long as they're not endangering themselves by doing it, they'll attempt to go to sleep, aka lay down and close their eyes. This was changed in v5 as, like you said, people can't do that on command.


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      • #4
        It seems like magical vampire mind control should not have any trouble influencing the unconscious of your mind and induce sleep.


        Exalted Whose Name is Carved in Leaves of Jade

        Senator of the Greater Chamber

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post
          Page 142 of the core book details the rules you're looking for quiet well. To summarize it a bit, Auspex can be used to sense hidden supernaturals and pierce illusions. In game terms the Auspex user rolls a Perception + Awareness against the target's Manipulation + Subterfuge, difficulty 7 for both.

          There's extra things when used against Obfuscate and Chimestry, but those are clearly listed on the page. It's under the side bar called Seeing the Unseen can't miss it.
          Thanks.
          I did read that sidebar however i am not sure, am i correct that this is done with second level Auspex? if so do you need to also consider rules of second level Auspex for this in addition? i mean the focus part that you use to read Auras.
          I know the sidebar doesn't really have any confusion on how it works but actually using this in gameplay is something else, as my group does asks how this is working beyond a simple roll.

          How about my other question regarding Aura reading?

          Btw the side bar on page 152 kinda answers your dominate questions. Effectively you don't really need to see their eyes just need to look them where their eyes should be. Even if the target is blind or pluck their eyes out, dominate can still affect them.

          Also in v20, dominate can make your target sleep as it's a listed example in the v20 dark ages rules. Most likely as long as they're not endangering themselves by doing it, they'll attempt to go to sleep, aka lay down and close their eyes. This was changed in v5 as, like you said, people can't do that on command.

          I guess V5 makes more sense here.
          Thank you.


          @Mizu
          I think for first level of Dominate this might be alright(Sleep command) but with this logic it might open a lot of other roads to abuse Dominate in higher levels. like,maybe someone can argue a command like go in coma to send a mortal into a coma.

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          • #6
            I don't think our unconscious mind controls comas, though. They are caused by outside factors damaging your body until your brain glitches in a way it was never meant to as opposed to sleep being a natural function performed by a healthy brain.


            Exalted Whose Name is Carved in Leaves of Jade

            Senator of the Greater Chamber

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            • #7
              Originally posted by burnforme View Post
              am i correct that this is done with second level Auspex?
              No, you just need more dots in Auspex to counteract more dots in Obfuscate/Chimerstry. When you want to detect someone who is Obfuscated you're still using Heightened Senses not Aura Reading, Psychic Touch, Telepathy, etc (i.e. the first 'level' power). A better rating simply allows you to overcome those who have a higher rating in Obfusctae/Chimerstry

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              • #8
                Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                am i correct that this is done with second level Auspex?
                Sadly no. Auspex just naturally senses the unseen, outside the normal powers. You can use aura perception when you sense the unseen, but by default you don't. Sense the unseen more supplements Auspex rather then requires certain powers to do.

                Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                Another:When you use Aura reading does that only work for one turn per scene? i mean if player A asks a question and uses Auspex and then he can see player B Aura in next turn(player b turn) will he be able to continue see his Aura for duration of whole conversation? or does it only last for a single turn?i kinda see more success than two rather unnecessarily in this case hence the book states you:"Can detect subtle shifts" with 4 successes and i guess this is only useful if player A keeps asking questions and check how players B Aura shifts each time in reaction.
                By the RAW it looks like Aura Perception is a one and done situation. When you use it you get the flash of information and that's it. Many STs, myself included, may rules as long as you concentrate you can continue to read the shifting colors of the aura, requiring a roll each turn.

                V20 doesn't list durations for a lot of its powers, sadly, leaving it up in the air. This points to the fact V20 focuses more on creating a story, and gives enough rules to play around with. If you're the ST, I recommend playing fast and loose with the rules honestly. If you're a player, just ask your ST how they handle some things.

                As for the "subtle shifts", yeah I never got that either.


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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Dogstar View Post

                  No, you just need more dots in Auspex to counteract more dots in Obfuscate/Chimerstry. When you want to detect someone who is Obfuscated you're still using Heightened Senses not Aura Reading, Psychic Touch, Telepathy, etc (i.e. the first 'level' power). A better rating simply allows you to overcome those who have a higher rating in Obfusctae/Chimerstry
                  Ah, okey this makes more sense.
                  Thanks.
                  Auspex just naturally senses the unseen, outside the normal powers
                  The sidebar states that
                  "When a vampire tries to use her
                  heightened perceptions to notice a Kindred
                  hidden with Obfuscate...
                  "
                  Doesn't this mean you must have Auspex activated? the problem with what you stated is that Auspex requires you to activate it in order to get the benefits and thats why i always thought breaking through Obfuscate works with second level Auspex.


                  By the RAW it looks like Aura Perception is a one and done situation. When you use it you get the flash of information and that's it. Many STs, myself included, may rules as long as you concentrate you can continue to read the shifting colors of the aura, requiring a roll each turn.
                  Yes it seems so, as one of Malkavian combos(Days of Passions Past) also states " Vampires with Auspex can take their chances and try to interpret a person's mood at that very moment from an aura."
                  Which seems to suggest is a one turn thing. thanks for info i might use this my own.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                    Ah, okey this makes more sense.
                    Thanks.

                    The sidebar states that
                    "When a vampire tries to use her
                    heightened perceptions to notice a Kindred
                    hidden with Obfuscate...
                    "
                    Doesn't this mean you must have Auspex activated? the problem with what you stated is that Auspex requires you to activate it in order to get the benefits and thats why i always thought breaking through Obfuscate works with second level Auspex.



                    Yes it seems so, as one of Malkavian combos(Days of Passions Past) also states " Vampires with Auspex can take their chances and try to interpret a person's mood at that very moment from an aura."
                    Which seems to suggest is a one turn thing. thanks for info i might use this my own.
                    You're overthinking it. Seeing the unseen is an inherent power of any level of Auspex. You have even a single dot of Auspex? Then you can attempt to see the unseen without any other Discipline activation. Just consider it a bonus power on its own.

                    V5 does just that, and explicitly makes it its own power. But V20 just makes it a passive benefit of Auspex.

                    If you feel that's overpowered, then just say the character must activate Heightened Sense to do this. That makes the most sense to me. Requiring the second level of Auspex to use it is expressly a nerf, because the ability is no longer possible from the first dot.


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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                      how does Auspex work against level 3 Obfuscate?
                      As others said, you just do it. You have the ability to sense the unseen from level one and your overall Auspex level just defines what powers you can try to counter. No other power is used in this.

                      Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                      Another Auspex related question, you can see the Aura of ghosts with Auspex. how does this work?
                      Just as with anything else, keeping in mind that Sense the Unseen may help you finding the ghost. Other than that, it is the ST's call when you have enough of a "line of sight" to see the aura. I would personally avoid letting the aura be read without first being able to pinpoint the ghost's location by something other than just luck (or activating it to see if it works).

                      Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                      When you use Aura reading does that only work for one turn per scene?
                      By RAW it doesn't seems to be the case, but it is irrelevant. It isn't so much that you can't read the aura for a longer time, but that doing so doesn't affects the result. Auras are hard to read even with the power active, so 1 success means you can only glimpse that little information no matter if you spend the whole scene watching it.

                      Subtle changes in the aura are useful to read deeper into emotional cues, and certainly indicate that the power stays active for a time at least. Most of the time we're under far more complex emotional states than we think, as we have emotional responses to a lot of simultaneous aspects of our context and many aspects can elicit more than one emotional response or bring memories that elicit their own responses even if just half-remembered.

                      Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                      i know you need to see the eyes in order for it to work, but how long is the range of this?
                      As long as you can meaningfully see their eyes.

                      Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                      Dominate allows you to use a command like Sleep. how does this work?i
                      Any way you want to roll with, because that was just dumb rulling, yet it is hardly an actual problem.

                      Originally posted by burnforme View Post
                      I think for first level of Dominate this might be alright(Sleep command) but with this logic it might open a lot of other roads to abuse Dominate in higher levels. like,maybe someone can argue a command like go in coma to send a mortal into a coma.
                      Even at first level Dominate you can give commands that have no foreseeable end, locking a mortal forever. You can also do far worse to mortals with other Disciplines. With some initial Str and maybe pumping blood to increase it, Potence 1 is enough to pop out a head as if it was a beer bottle's cap.

                      We have an instinctive impression of power coming from Dominate at first because it affects something dear to us: personal agency. But in actual game play it isn't actually all that of a problem.

                      You should watch out for using it against PCs, though. Dominate and Presence against PCs aren't overpowered, but are problematic, and should be done sparingly until everyone is able to express how much they're comfortable with it. This is a game and should first be fun, and that's the only real concern with those two Disciplines, they're not overpowered and don't worry about abuse for now.

                      Originally posted by Mizu View Post
                      I don't think our unconscious mind controls comas, though. They are caused by outside factors damaging your body until your brain glitches in a way it was never meant to as opposed to sleep being a natural function performed by a healthy brain.
                      Actually comas are defensive mechanisms a healthy brain activates against some forms of trauma. It is not an outside cause, but an internal one just like sleep in this sense.

                      Dominate is a fictional power. It affects sleep and not coma in V20 because the authors thought it would made sense and because this is balanced from a game perspective, but as phenomena they would make the same sense, and there are actually methods to induce coma that work precisely because convincing your brain to go comatose by itself is a thing.


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                      • #12
                        Dominate causing sleep was replaced with the ability to remove short term memories in V5. I think the rationale is the same: both powers allow you to avoid a Masquerade breach with an easy application of Dominate against a mortal. They just go about it in different ways--V20 by allowing you to make them sleep and V5 by allowing you to remove the memories after the fact. I think either is fine, and not particularly overpowered. Sleep is perhaps slightly easier, as the mortal can't escape or attack you before you remove their memories.


                        Writer, publisher, performer
                        Mostly he/his, sometimes she/her IRL https://adam-lowe.com

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                        • #13
                          Little off but I do have some of my own questions.

                          As monteparnas mentioned, Aura perception is really hard to pull off (difficulty 8). Is this meant to be made easier by heightened senses reducing the difficulty of perception rolls?

                          Does a command like "forget" work for Command in V20.

                          Do you allow Awareness talent to sense that something's wrong when someone is Obfuscated, even if they don't have the Auspex levels to compete with the Obfuscate? I believe that , provided a fairly difficult roll, they should at least feel off or uneasy with no indication why.

                          Can Ugly bloodlines benefit from the Impressive Visage ritual (ROTB* 146)
                          Last edited by MyWifeIsScary; 02-22-2022, 02:57 PM.


                          Throw me/White wolf some money with Quietus: Drug Lord, Poison King
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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                            Little off but I do have some of my own questions.

                            As monteparnas mentioned, Aura perception is really hard to pull off (difficulty 8). Is this meant to be made easier by heightened senses reducing the difficulty of perception rolls?

                            Does a command like "forget" work for Command in V20.

                            Do you allow Awareness talent to sense that something's wrong when someone is Obfuscated, even if they don't have the Auspex levels to compete with the Obfuscate? I believe that , provided a fairly difficult roll, they should at least feel off or uneasy with no indication why.

                            Can Ugly bloodlines benefit from the Impressive Visage ritual (LotB 146)
                            I would assume there's no difficulty break on Aura Perception, a) because the difficulty modifier is Storyteller fiat anyway, so it isn't universal; b) because my reading is that the RAW refers to mundane perceptions, rather than supernatural ones; and c) the power already takes into account that you have Heightened Senses, as Disciplines are linear in V20, and yet makes no mention of this (e.g., by saying difficulty 8 - Auspex). The difficulty therefore should take your Auspex 2 into account already, if it applied at all.

                            If it did apply, though, you'd have to also ask: does difficulty 8 include the Auspex modifier (in which case it's difficulty 7 at three dots, difficulty 6 at four and difficulty 5 at five) or not (in which case, it's actually difficulty 6 for anyone with two dots of Auspex, thus is never difficulty 8 for anyone, so why bother mentioning it without any caveats?).

                            A more lenient reading would be the former of those (it's difficulty 8 at Auspex 2, 7 at Auspex 3, and so on), as that seems somewhere in between the strictest and loosest interpretations. If that encourages your players to use that power, I'd say go for it.

                            As for the RAI on Command... I'm leaning towards no on that, too. You can make people sleep or laugh, which implies changing their consciousness, but it seems like forgetting is something the text would call out (especially because level three expressly does deal with memory changes, further implying lower level powers can't).

                            The rules also specify that you can't give an ambiguous command, RAW. With 'forget', the obvious question is, 'Forget what?' Everything? The last minute? One word isn't enough to clarify that.

                            Next up, I'd allow Awareness to sense Obfuscate, but more as a vague sensation, 'The hairs on your neck raise. Something unusual is nearby.' But you'd get no detail like with Auspex.

                            Finally, Impressive Visage is in RotB, not LotB, if anyone else couldn't find it. Anyway, I would read the intent of the Nosferatu Weakness ('All Nosferatu have an Appearance
                            score of zero, and they may never improve it') as literal and all-encompassing. The word never is an absolute. As that ritual boosts Appearance, it should simply fail on a Nosferatu.

                            But, personally, I could be convinced to allow it for shits and giggles, if the player knew how to roleplay it. It could be hilariously funny!


                            Writer, publisher, performer
                            Mostly he/his, sometimes she/her IRL https://adam-lowe.com

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                            • #15
                              Right, ROTB, I'll make the fix.

                              As for Forget
                              Human memory is believed to work a little like computers. There's a separation of short term memory and long term memory. "Forget" could conceivably delete the uncertain amount of short term memory that has yet to be encoded into long term memory.


                              Nosferatu can increase their appearance with Obfuscate, and IV is temporary (and costly; a whole point of virgin blood? We gotta find a lot of virgins to keep that sustainable)
                              Last edited by MyWifeIsScary; 02-22-2022, 03:01 PM.


                              Throw me/White wolf some money with Quietus: Drug Lord, Poison King
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