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How come none of the clans remember the Baali?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Hello View Post
    But there has to be many others who would want to pass on the knowledge they have on the baali so that others will be better equipped to face these monsters if they were to ever meet them.
    Practical reasons
    Mind you, the Ashirra (okay, mostly the Al-Amin and the Banu Haqim) made a pretty decent job keeping the Baali in check on its territory and NEVER forgot them
    The others?
    Every Clan have a stain, the Baali one way or another made them "dirty"
    Nergal was the one most adept at dealing with other Cainites. It is said that he served as Arikel's wench, debated philosophy with Troile and traded vice secrets with the Tzimisce Antediluvian, just to name a few
    Aside that.... admiting the Baali still exist would mean, they have to admit, the Salubri were right, admiting the Baali wars happened
    Admiting Samiel' brood and other clan's warriros fought valiantly and saved the world
    Admiting, 3500 years ago in the Second Baali Wars, legendary Cainites from across the Middle East, Europe, Africa, and central Asia united against "Shaitan". Among them were the Brujah Menele, the Malkavian known only as the Dionysian, the Ventrue Balthazar, and Setite sorcerers led directly by the Antediluvian Set himself... and they were unable to penetrate the defenses of Nergal's lair beneath Crete, they instead resorted to drastic measures: they caused the volcano on the nearby island of Thera to erupt, burying Knossos beneath volcanic ash and obliterating Nergal's stronghold
    These things... are not something they would admit and remember
    The fact these ancient monsters, not to mention Set himself existed and saved the world?
    Would cause more than chaos...

    Originally posted by Hello View Post
    In all honesty, it surprises me that the Brujah that were around when Carthage was a thing, don't remember the one clan that ruined it all.
    Again, pride and they would have to admit, they were the Clan that ruined Carthage, not the Baali
    The Brujah are and always were naive idealists
    And the clan's Idealists focus strictly on a version of their clan's history in Carthage that is romanticized to the point of fiction, while others see the fall of Carthage and its Brujah as a harsh object lesson, one from which all Kindred have much to learn
    It is more comfortable and acceptable to blame the others, after all, the Malkavian seeress Tryphosa gave guidance to the Roman prince Camilla directing him to act against Carthage, and the Carthaginian Toreador Helena betrayed her city to the Romans. The Toreador Antediluvian, Artemis Orthia, Lysander and prince Alchias formed an alliance against the Brujah of Carthage (not against the Baali, maybe Cybelle, who was active in Rome that time and hated Moloch made things... interesting); under the leadership of the Roman Ventrue the alliance encompassed the Malkavians, Toreador, Lasombra and their allies. It is way easier to hate them and blame them than and accepting the fact, Moloch, basically ONE Baali managed to drew Troile into desensitization and degeneration, to the point she attended to their infernal rituals to see if she still cares (spiler: she didn't cared)
    Admiting those darker tales that speak of a degenerate blood cult under none other than Troile, the Antediluvian ancestor of the Brujah; of human sacrifices – including infant sacrifices – to infernal powers; and of collusion between Troile and the Baali methuselah Moloch?
    It is way better for everyone to... forget
    Last edited by Shadeprowler; 04-03-2022, 11:32 AM.

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    • #17
      I'm dubious on the Baali being necessary since Infernalists are a thing. Infernalists do the same thing as Baali, while having more dramatic possibilities because an infernalist can easily be the friend from your own clan sired at the same time..

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      • #18
        We have to remember that we - as players - are provided much more information about the setting than actual characters. That information is packaged for us in a convenient format in a comprehensive way. That is not how information is actually provided by vampires to their childer. They would provide a lot more information that would be considered to be trivial or uninteresting to us as players, but which would be incredibly relevant, practical, and important to characters. And there would be lots of things that we as players find important because we are genre savvy and realize what's important in a fictional setting. But concepts like "Chekhov's Gun" is only important in fiction - it has no relevance in real life. And therefore the characters would react accordingly.

        Furthermore, how important the Baali are is entirely dependent on what an ST wants to do with them. Some STs love them and make them very important. I, for one, have never used them. Nor have I ever played in a chronicle where they came into play.

        The sourcebooks are not written objectively. They are written from an in character perspective. The narrators are unreliable, and in many cases it's a mystery on why that character would know so many details. Are the details they provide actual fact or embellishment?

        Every ST will make their own decisions. Indeed, so will future writers of official game material - this is why the game has so many retcons between editions.

        In my own games, I regard the Baali as being a relatively minor element of vampire history. Yes, they are in thrall to their demonic masters and intended to do some terrible things, but never actually had the numbers or powers that they like to claim. They were wiped out thousands of years ago in the early bronze age, and their threat more or less ended there. They did leave a legacy and some survivors behind, and they scurry about in secret until they are massacred every now and then. But very few vampires nowadays known anything about them except as words that designate a boogeyman, and only a very few vampires have access to anything that can actually provide real concrete information about them. I leave just enough there in my head so if I ever do come up a great idea to use them, they can fit within my head canon.

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        • #19
          The History of the Baali at CT Phipps' tables

          My take on the subject is the Baali are something that USED to be very important in the same way the Salubri were very important but are so far removed from the Modern Nights' vampires that most vampires, even ELDERS, will have never heard of the Baali.

          The Baali were originally THE enemies of Kindred in society and they were opponents of the First City and Second City's Antediluvians. Haqim and Saulot built whole armies to fight the Baali who spread their religion of demon worship across the entirety of the Middle East and/or Northern Africa. We're talking battles of cults, demons, and Mass Embrace tactics that were the kinds of things you'd see in the Hyborian Age or Exalted. It was like Second Edition's massive Sabbat battles across the East Coast and katanas and trench coats for vampirekind up until Carthage. They were the Sabbat of their age.

          And then they were annihilated at Carthage.

          There's nothing more depressing for a vampire than winning the war that you set out to fight as conflict provides meaning to many vampires' existence. The Salubri and Banu Haqim annihilated the majority pf the Baali with the help of the other Clans at Carthage before burying Moloch in the ground for eternity.

          Nergal/Shaitan high-tailed it out of the region and proceeded to use whatever magic they had at their possession to transport themselves to the New World. Because I'm not a racist colonialist, the locals there and their gods battled against the Baali and their blasphemous corruption of the local religion for the next couple of thousand years. The third Baali founder? Which I name Ishtar rather than Unnamed I claim went to Enoch in the Underworld and became the founder of the True Hand. Fun fact: the wife of Nergal in Mesopitamian mythology is Ereshkigal, which sounds a lot like Arikiel to me.

          So what happened after that? Well, the Baali were broken as a power in the world but that doesn't mean they WENT AWAY as it turns out to be spectacularly hard to exterminate a bloodline completely, especially when they have Infernal investments and Dark Thaumaturgy. However, by 1200 AD, the Baali were at the last time they were any relevance. They were reduced to high generation witch cults in the woods and only a handful of them knew the deeper secrets of their group. Not even the destruction of the Salubri helped their situation as the Banu Haqim poured into Europe and wiped out most of their remaining members that had been teaching their secrets to the Anarchs.

          The Baali's legacy is pretty much solely preserved in the Sabbat as the Infernalism they learned was learned from the Dark Bloodline. It was a thing passed down from sire to child and priests that the Inquisition was never really able to root out. However, for ACTUAL BAALI in the world? There's about 12. 8 of them are members of the Black Hand, one of them is the guy from Beckett's Jyhad Diary, and one of them is Shaitan. Except Shaitan was buried underneath Mexico City's Hive by Samael Haight before he was slain and I find that a fitting end for both characters.

          Another still is Ur-Shulgi but he's rejected all of the Baali's ways.

          They are effectively a nonentity but occasionally members show up in the weirdest places with seeming complete randomness like Brother Vick in BLOODLINES.


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

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          • #20
            It really takes a few hours of conversation to convey what the sire knows about different bloodlines and such.

            However, there's a lot of bullshit involved.
            First, It's not just the sire who's thinking about whether or not to ommit/lie to their child, it's also whether their own sire omitted/lied to them. Most Vampires don't know a Baali they can fact check with, and it'd be a miracle if the baali was both willing and knowledgeable. Quite simply It'd be embarrasing if the sire got something wrong.

            Second, there's a lot of politics. It's great to impress your child, but for some it might be wiser to keep some things to yourself in order to not burn out some of your usefulness as a sire. But also stuff like Carthage or Gargoyles is really politically charged and the majority of the time it'd be good for neither you nor your childe to be disclosing certain viewpoints. Remember, vampires can make enemies for wrongthink. Better safe than sorry.


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            • #21
              Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
              It really takes a few hours of conversation to convey what the sire knows about different bloodlines and such.

              However, there's a lot of bullshit involved.
              First, It's not just the sire who's thinking about whether or not to ommit/lie to their child, it's also whether their own sire omitted/lied to them. Most Vampires don't know a Baali they can fact check with, and it'd be a miracle if the baali was both willing and knowledgeable. Quite simply It'd be embarrasing if the sire got something wrong.

              Second, there's a lot of politics. It's great to impress your child, but for some it might be wiser to keep some things to yourself in order to not burn out some of your usefulness as a sire. But also stuff like Carthage or Gargoyles is really politically charged and the majority of the time it'd be good for neither you nor your childe to be disclosing certain viewpoints. Remember, vampires can make enemies for wrongthink. Better safe than sorry.
              Oh, absolutely.

              One of the underrated bits from Bruva Alfabusa's current forays into the World of Darkness (from this episode here), is the commentary on how paranoid you must be when venturing into the realm of supernatural conspiracies. When eyes and ears are everywhere - Dominated passers by, invisible spies, mind-reading telepaths, and the rats in the walls, just to name a few - one must be careful what Deep Lore truth bombs you drop.

              Even if you completely trust someone - which few vampires can afford to do, with good reason - that doesn't necessarily help. When a greater vampire can just look your childer in the eyes and make them reveal all they know, trust doesn't factor into it. Anything you tell your childer can be used against you.

              Ergo, Kindred do well to be very selective about what knowledge they pass on, and when. "Need to Know" becomes the rule of the day.

              Unless a vampire knows for a fact Baali are a current and pressing threat, those who know anything about them will usually rate them far down the list of relevant topics. If, indeed, they think about them at all. There's simply too little to gain from sharing, to justify the dangers of making younger vampires aware that Infernalists exist(ed) and that their sire knew about them.


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              • #22
                A more simpler comment is the fact that to Modern Cainites, the Baali are going to sound ridiculous.

                "There used to be a bunch of Satanist demon-worshiping Kindred and because DEMONS AND HELL ARE REAL they were the most feared and evil among us."

                If you an atheist or a non-Judeao Christian background or skeptical of something like infernalism, that's a lot to swallow.


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

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                • #23
                  Ehh, maybe? I imagine after finding out vampires are real and that you're now one with supernatural powers, and that werewolves are real, and that vampire-wizards are real, and that vampire-necromancers who chat with ghosts are real (oh and the ghosts are also real) it's not such a stretch to entertain the idea that maybe demons or evil spirits could also be real.

                  Like seriously, if I got turned into a vampire tomorrow night and got magical powers and then another vampire told me, "By the way, watch out for the demons. They're bad, bad business," I'd say, "Okay. Thanks for the heads up." And I'd absolutely mean it.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                    A more simpler comment is the fact that to Modern Cainites, the Baali are going to sound ridiculous.

                    "There used to be a bunch of Satanist demon-worshiping Kindred and because DEMONS AND HELL ARE REAL they were the most feared and evil among us."

                    If you an atheist or a non-Judeao Christian background or skeptical of something like infernalism, that's a lot to swallow.

                    If you are a vampire athiest, you are going to have a lot of trouble.


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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                      A more simpler comment is the fact that to Modern Cainites, the Baali are going to sound ridiculous.

                      "There used to be a bunch of Satanist demon-worshiping Kindred and because DEMONS AND HELL ARE REAL they were the most feared and evil among us."

                      If you an atheist or a non-Judeao Christian background or skeptical of something like infernalism, that's a lot to swallow.

                      If you are a vampire athiest, you are going to have a pretty hard time as it is surviving undead society.


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                      • #26
                        Not exactly an atheist, but I don't think it's that hard to rationalise.

                        "Modern science currently lacks the means to determine all aspects of the universe, and likely will for a long, long time yet if it ever will. Turns out the - for lack of a better world - paranormal exists as one of those aspects. Vampires exist, along with other phenomena such as "spirits" and possibly other dimensions of reality. A group of vampires utilised one of those phenomena, according to history, for evil. These things have been coloured through cultural and spiritual lenses, sich as the Bible, giving rise to the Cainite origin myth and the infernalism of the Baali."

                        Unless you're an idiot, post embrace it's obvious there's more to the world than you understand, regardless of your particular perception of it.
                        Last edited by Rhywbeth; 04-05-2022, 11:13 AM.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Hello View Post
                          If you are a vampire athiest, you are going to have a pretty hard time as it is surviving undead society.
                          Honestly, most vampires seem to be that way. The Caine Myth is accepted by the Sabbat and Blood Cults but is hardly mainstream.

                          Magic is real but that doesn't prove anything about God or at least the Western version.


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

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post

                            Honestly, most vampires seem to be that way. The Caine Myth is accepted by the Sabbat and Blood Cults but is hardly mainstream.

                            Magic is real but that doesn't prove anything about God or at least the Western version.

                            Still, if you see a a tremere using magic, that should challenge your beliefs as an athiest


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                            • #29
                              So, strictly speaking just because magical stuff exists doesn't mean that a deity does. It could be that the vampiric condition along with magical spells are just natural phenomena and can be explained scientifically. Discovering the existence of magic might not be any different than discovering the existence of new kinds of particles or different kinds of physical laws.

                              That is in theory. In practice, of course discovering that vampires exist along with all kinds of other magical things is going to make you way more likely to believe in religion even if you were a staunchly skeptical atheist before. Even if God doesn't exist, it has been proven that the world is a radically different place than you previously believed. That should be reason for doubting previous assumptions.

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                              • #30
                                I suppose it could be why there are vampire infernalists, despite so much fiction telling them that deals with the devil are stupid and doomed. There are likely some vampires who think they are just dealing with deluded alien spirits. Essentially just engaging in something akin to Koldunism. They may not even believe in souls and think they are chumping these deluded alien spirits by selling them something that doesn't exist.

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