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  • Jackob
    started a topic Lugoj Bloodbreaker's rebellion in 5e

    Lugoj Bloodbreaker's rebellion in 5e

    So, I am a Dark Ages player and haven't really read 5e until recently, where I started looking into it to see if it the rules could be used for Dark Ages.

    One of the firs things I came across was that the Tzimisce now have Dominate and I was wondering how that would have affected the canon history of the Anarch Rebellion, specifically Lugoj the Bloodbreaker and whether or not this is adressed in the books.

    The set-up prior to 5e was that the Tzimisce were masters of the Blood Bond, even having magical rituals that could modify the effect of said bond. This set up the clan elders' fall to the Anarchs when Lugoj and younger Kolduns used magic to create the Vaulderie, which broke the blood bonds that the elders used to keep the younger generations in line. With nothing else to control them with, the elders of Clan Tzimisce were doomed.

    However, in 5e, with the Tzimisce having Dominate, they would rely far less on Blood Bonds, not have the same reason to develop magic that affects the Blood Bond, and wouldn't have been as overrun by the breaking of the Blood Bond offered by the Vaulderie.

  • monteparnas
    replied
    Originally posted by Gurkhal View Post
    I strongly disagree. The blood bond does in my understanding of it (I checked the V20 Dark Ages core for a more official text on the blood bond but found none in my search, if someone can provide some help with locating this I would be thankful) is that they become your supernaturally enamored "yes-men" and lickspittles.
    The description of the Boond and most of its effects are just emotional fluff, there are very few hard rules on it. At no point it was ever said that Thralls have no intelligence and will of their own, and plenty canon NPCs are perfectly functional despite it. For an official text, V20 Core, pp. 286 to 288, emotional fluff through and through with only two more concrete material outside how to break the Bond or how it affects Dominate:
    Originally posted by V20 Core pp 288 second paragraph
    It is possible, though difficult, for a vampire to tem-
    porarily resist a blood bond. Doing so requires the
    player to make a Willpower roll (difficulty is typically
    8, though this can be modified depending on the reg-
    nant’s treatment and the thrall’s Nature) and accu-
    mulate a number of successes equal to the number of
    times the thrall has partaken of the regnant’s blood, to
    a maximum of difficulty 9. The thrall must then spend
    a Willpower point. Upon doing so, the bond is negated
    for a variable amount of time: from one scene (if the
    thrall merely wishes to plot against the regnant, deliver
    confidential information to an enemy, etc.) to one turn
    (if the thrall wishes to attack the regnant physically).
    The thrall can continue to expend Willpower to ex-
    tend the duration of “freedom,” but once she ceases do-
    ing so, the blood bond resumes at full force.
    So, there is enough free thought in a Thrall to decide to try this.
    Originally posted by V20 Core pp 287 third paragraph under Third Drink
    The blood bond is true love, albeit a twisted and per-
    verse version of it. Ultimately, we can’t reduce the va-
    garies of love down to a simple “yes/no” system. Some
    thralls (particularly people with Conformist or other
    dependent Natures, or with Willpower 5 or less) will
    commit any act, including suicide or murder, for their
    beloved; other characters have certain core principles
    that they will not violate.
    And that's the most important one. The Blood Bond work as love. It is an emotion. Different people react to this emotion in different ways. No necessary yes-men or anything. Not even saying that those who do anything for the vampire lose their intelligence. They are still themselves, if struck by an overwhelming emotion, and they act the way they do because this is already literally in their nature.

    While the interpretation that a Thrall loses their ability to think independently may be valid for some of them, it otherwise simply isn't in the rules, RAW or RAI.

    V5 introduced the rule of the blood only working fresh out of the body, no such limitation existed before. It also streamlined most of the rules, but still limits the effect to "roll to act against the Regnant's wishes" instead of anything resembling lack of a mind of your own. It even includes a reminder that the Thrall doesn't necessarily know they're under the Bond.

    Other than that the Bond has risks like jealousy, precisely because it preserves the Thrall's independent thoughts. It isn't a shortcut to leadership, but it does work better at it than Dominate, and is more useful as a side tool for someone that really knows what they're doing (including how to prevent this jealousy from becoming an issue).

    No shortcut exists in the game to become an effective leader, but Dominate and Blood Bonds serve as tools for leaders, both good and bad ones. Yet, they do so serving extremely different purposes. The Bond gives you emotional push to use judiciously and a way of more easily managing punishments and rewards when you need'em. Dominate works when leadership failed. Which is still a good thing, as you can't expect to always succeed, but it certainly isn't making you more effective, just helping you to recoup your losses or to forward non-leadership plans.

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  • Gurkhal
    replied
    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    I don't know them, but I do, if we're talking "effective for leadership", then Dominate isn't effective at all, and while also not that great, the Blood Bond is plain better.
    I put leadership within quotation marks in my posts because I think that both Dominate and the blood bond allows for "leadership" as in supernatural compulsion over a target as opposed to real leadership for which there is to my knowledge no shortcut in the Cainite mystical arsenal. I'd actually argue that both of them, Dominate and blood bond, are pretty bad for real leadership.

    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    Both are restricted in use to a single target and need some preparation for use. You can't simply spam them on your subjects and call yourself a leader. They're both exceedingly good at what they do, but what they do isn't blanket leadership.
    On this I agree.

    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    One important thing for leadership is the ability to build efficient hierarchies, with subjects that act in your behalf and best interest but are able to do so on their own, with minimal micromanagement, so you don't have to spend your time with minor decisions for every person under your command and can benefit from creative decision making by other people.
    On this I also agree however I would argue that the blood bond is no better than Dominate.

    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    This is something Dominate is specifically built to not provide. Dominate imposes your will directly and non-subtly (from the mind's perspective), it forces the victim into the specific behavior you defined and don't give you much say in how they'll behave outside your specific orders. A few personal servants and/or Dominate Commands on key personnel may help, but that's as far as Dominate goes.
    Yes, that is true.

    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    What a Blood Bond makes is to induce the victim into desiring your well being and approval. Harder to work with, but far more useful as you can then capitalize on this emotions and still have their full mental capacity at your disposal. It's useful for lieutenants, body guards and servants with specialized skills. Do it right and you guarantee loyalty instead of obedience to specific orders.
    I strongly disagree. The blood bond does in my understanding of it (I checked the V20 Dark Ages core for a more official text on the blood bond but found none in my search, if someone can provide some help with locating this I would be thankful) is that they become your supernaturally enamored "yes-men" and lickspittles.

    Not at all with their full mental capacity, not to mention that your different blood bonded servants may go after each other out of jealousy and a desire to have your favor all to themselves.

    If you want actual loyalty, you will have to build that without a supernatural shortcut.

    In my experience the fact that there was an Anarch Revolt shows that the blood bond does not work all that well for building loyalty since so many younger Cainites were willing to break it rather than live in bliss with it.

    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    And it isn't as hard as you say to apply. You can mix the blood into something, which is a standard technique for Bonding mortals, but can be adapted for vampires. You can slip the blood while they sleep or something. And if you're going for a mortal Ghoul, you may just offer power. You can have someone else deliver the blood. It is just as versatile and subtle as winning staring contexts with people, just in different ways.
    In practical terms I suppose it can be true as I'm not sure for how long the Vitae of a Cainite remains Vitae once it leaves their bodies.

    Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
    Stripping your underlings of the ability to disobey, then calling yourself a leader is pretty stupid, as anyone with a bossy superior in the job knows.
    I totally agree. Hence why both Dominate and blood bond, as well as other Cainite magical tricks, is for "leadership" and not leadership in the real sense.

    Leave a comment:


  • monteparnas
    replied
    Originally posted by Gurkhal View Post
    Black FlagI don't recall claiming you said that specifically either. I was however pointing out what I think was an aspect which made the argument that blood bond is as, or more, effective than Dominate less convincing for me. As I understood that to be one of your points. Was that an incorrect reading of your post?
    I don't know them, but I do, if we're talking "effective for leadership", then Dominate isn't effective at all, and while also not that great, the Blood Bond is plain better.

    Both are restricted in use to a single target and need some preparation for use. You can't simply spam them on your subjects and call yourself a leader. They're both exceedingly good at what they do, but what they do isn't blanket leadership.

    One important thing for leadership is the ability to build efficient hierarchies, with subjects that act in your behalf and best interest but are able to do so on their own, with minimal micromanagement, so you don't have to spend your time with minor decisions for every person under your command and can benefit from creative decision making by other people.

    This is something Dominate is specifically built to not provide. Dominate imposes your will directly and non-subtly (from the mind's perspective), it forces the victim into the specific behavior you defined and don't give you much say in how they'll behave outside your specific orders. A few personal servants and/or Dominate Commands on key personnel may help, but that's as far as Dominate goes.

    What a Blood Bond makes is to induce the victim into desiring your well being and approval. Harder to work with, but far more useful as you can then capitalize on this emotions and still have their full mental capacity at your disposal. It's useful for lieutenants, body guards and servants with specialized skills. Do it right and you guarantee loyalty instead of obedience to specific orders.

    And it isn't as hard as you say to apply. You can mix the blood into something, which is a standard technique for Bonding mortals, but can be adapted for vampires. You can slip the blood while they sleep or something. And if you're going for a mortal Ghoul, you may just offer power. You can have someone else deliver the blood. It is just as versatile and subtle as winning staring contexts with people, just in different ways.

    Stripping your underlings of the ability to disobey, then calling yourself a leader is pretty stupid, as anyone with a bossy superior in the job knows.

    Leave a comment:


  • Gurkhal
    replied
    Black Flag

    I don't recall claiming you said that specifically either. I was however pointing out what I think was an aspect which made the argument that blood bond is as, or more, effective than Dominate less convincing for me. As I understood that to be one of your points. Was that an incorrect reading of your post?

    Leave a comment:


  • Black Flag
    replied
    Originally posted by Gurkhal View Post
    Black Flag I have to disagree that blood bond would be as effective as Dominate in actual use
    Where did I say that?

    The original claim was that that clans with natural Dominate abilities wouldn’t bother to submit their childer to the blood bond. This doesn’t logically follow, since Dominate is not capable of reproducing the effects of the bond but is in fact suited for entirely different things. Nor is it difficult to bond a childe whose feeding you control, especially if you also use Dominate on them. And one you’ve got them bound, it’s easy to keep them bound indefinitely.

    Dominate can make someone mindlessly carry out an action in the moment, and it can mess with their memories, but it can’t make them confide in you or reluctant to act against you in private. Dominate is easy and very effective, but for a very limited range of uses, whereas the blood bond is always in effect and brings about major changes in behavior.

    Also, savvy victims can figure out that Dominate has been used on them (having them rationalize commands as their own free will is a specific high-level power), and not only will repeated use breed resentment, but Dominate is incapable of preventing a resentful childe from orchestrating your destruction. That is, unless you’ve also got them under the blood bond.
    Last edited by Black Flag; 04-15-2022, 09:04 AM.

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  • Gurkhal
    replied
    Black Flag

    I have to disagree that blood bond would be as effective as Dominate in actual use. Theoretically one can argue that blood bond gives more bang for the buck, but its also alot more work to actually get it across.

    To make someone submit to the blood bond you have to make them drink your blood. Actually doing this is not at all subtle and not that easy with an unwilling victim. Just think about the scenario and you'll realize how much work to overpower or convince someone who isn't already totally with you to drink your blood. That's just insane both in modern nights as well as historical for most areas I can think about.

    Dominate on the other hand only, unless I'm totally misrecalling, need eye contact and you can use the power. Alot more easy and relatively subtle for the user and in particular easier against an unwilling target.

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  • Black Flag
    replied
    Originally posted by Jackob View Post
    However, in 5e, with the Tzimisce having Dominate, they would rely far less on Blood Bonds, not have the same reason to develop magic that affects the Blood Bond, and wouldn't have been as overrun by the breaking of the Blood Bond offered by the Vaulderie.
    This assumption is unfounded. Blood bonds have been no less used by Ventrue, Lasombra, Tremere (prior to their current situation) and other clans with easy access to Dominate. This is because Dominate is incapable of artificially creating loyalty, or indeed doing anything that requires the victim to make real decisions or employ higher-order thinking. Nor can it implant permanent commands: you can plant a triggered command to go off later, but once it does, it’s done. Meanwhile, a blood bond persists for a long time and affects the thrall even in the regnant’s absence. This helps to protect the regnant against things that Dominate can’t, such as the thrall conspiring against them. Blood bonds aren’t infallible, but they’re a lot of sway for little cost.
    Last edited by Black Flag; 04-14-2022, 10:12 PM.

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  • CTPhipps
    replied
    Originally posted by Garygeneric View Post

    I would argue that Dominate is the opposite of ruling through fear. Dominate is a very subtle, low-masquerade thread because people don’t know it’s being used on them. Their mind shuts down to facilitate the puppetry you invoke.
    That is notably the case for humans but not vampires in V5 as they know what's happening to them and have a natural resistance.

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  • Baaldam
    replied
    Little bit of trivia - the artistic name Bela Lugosi, means "Bela of Lugoj". So you can guess what are my main references and visuals when fleshing out the Bloodbreaker - or the most regular form of the ancient that usurped his place.

    Vykos i like to imagine as Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee) in the final sequence of the Wicker Man.

    Meanwhile for Alexei, the Tzimisce antagonist in Giovanni Chronicles III and main narrator of the original Clanbook Tzimisce, i also use Summerisle, but in his "day-to-day" look, so to speak.
    Last edited by Baaldam; 04-11-2022, 05:56 PM.

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  • Kharnov
    replied
    Originally posted by Garygeneric View Post
    I would argue that Dominate is the opposite of ruling through fear. Dominate is a very subtle, low-masquerade thread because people don’t know it’s being used on them. Their mind shuts down to facilitate the puppetry you invoke.

    Auspex is actually an amazing tool for ruling through fear. You can literally convict your subjects of thought crimes. To me, this is every bit as terrifying as the physical brutality of Vicissitude. You have nothing of your very own and even an intrusive thought can bring endless hell down on you, your family, your village, whatever the Lord of the Land deems fit.
    The thing is, (Pre-V5) Dominate does not alter your memories until level 3, and there are advanced powers that specifically prevents a Dominate victim from interpreting Dominate commands as something forced on them, which seems to imply to me that you *can* recognize that otherwise. Being the victim of a Dominate command once or twice might leave you confused, unsure why you're doing these things you never thought of doing, but at a certain point a victim is going to realize that they *cannot* disobey this person on certain occasions, even assuming that they know nothing about Dominate. In my opinion, that is pretty terrifying. And if you *do* know about Dominate and how it works, it is definitely something to be afraid of; knowing someone can compel obedience from you, or even twist your memories and try and make you into someone that you are not, is downright horrifying.

    I do agree that Auspex has potential for horror as well. Even setting aside thoughtcrime, this is someone who can potentially figure out what your worst fears are without you ever having to tell them, and then they can use those fears against you.

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  • Garygeneric
    replied
    Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

    I mean that's a perfectly plausible explanation but if you want people to be ruled by methods OTHER than terror and fear then you want PRESENCE not Dominate.
    I would argue that Dominate is the opposite of ruling through fear. Dominate is a very subtle, low-masquerade thread because people don’t know it’s being used on them. Their mind shuts down to facilitate the puppetry you invoke.

    Auspex is actually an amazing tool for ruling through fear. You can literally convict your subjects of thought crimes. To me, this is every bit as terrifying as the physical brutality of Vicissitude. You have nothing of your very own and even an intrusive thought can bring endless hell down on you, your family, your village, whatever the Lord of the Land deems fit.

    Leave a comment:


  • CTPhipps
    replied
    Originally posted by Gurkhal View Post
    Just gonna throw in that, to me, giving the Tzimisce Dominate isn't a game breaker. But it does change them since the combination of their Dark Ages High Clan position together with a lack of a in-clan social Discipline meant together with their historical reserved attitude to other Clans, at least to me, that was the reason as to why they developed terror and fear and the blood bound to the degree they did in order to facilitate control and "leadership".

    So I am personally torn in both directions and I'll have to see which direction I would go if I got in a situation where I had to make a choice and stick with it. Like a player wanting to play a Tzimisce with a solid concept beyond "Vicissitude for the win!"
    I mean that's a perfectly plausible explanation but if you want people to be ruled by methods OTHER than terror and fear then you want PRESENCE not Dominate.

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  • Gurkhal
    replied
    Just gonna throw in that, to me, giving the Tzimisce Dominate isn't a game breaker. But it does change them since the combination of their Dark Ages High Clan position together with a lack of a in-clan social Discipline meant together with their historical reserved attitude to other Clans, at least to me, that was the reason as to why they developed terror and fear and the blood bound to the degree they did in order to facilitate control and "leadership".

    So I am personally torn in both directions and I'll have to see which direction I would go if I got in a situation where I had to make a choice and stick with it. Like a player wanting to play a Tzimisce with a solid concept beyond "Vicissitude for the win!"

    Leave a comment:


  • Reasor
    replied
    Originally posted by Black Fox View Post
    Retconning the in-clan Disciplines of a clan doesn't need to change the game's history at all.
    And Tzimsisce can build for Vicissitude via amalgam powers, anyhow. This is honestly one of my favorite alterations that V5 delivers, consolidating the two Tzimisce bloodlines in a way that hearkens back to Dirty Secrets of the Black Hand's old canon about which was the clan specialty first, the hypnotism or the fleshcrafting.

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