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  • Originally posted by Vamps Like Us View Post

    Because they don't think the broken discipline is broken. As I said I've house ruled lots of things not just Thaumaturgy.
    I'll admit yes there are problems with Thaumaturgy but it is far from the only broken Discipline. Do you ban Celerity or Obtenebrate? Both those Disciplines are broken as well.

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    • Originally posted by stanlemon View Post

      I'll admit yes there are problems with Thaumaturgy but it is far from the only broken Discipline. Do you ban Celerity or Obtenebrate? Both those Disciplines are broken as well.

      But not to the same degree.

      Celerity is just a straight up speed boost, unless you get to the tier 6+ levels of mastery. And only vampires of generation 6 or lower can wield those.


      And Obtenebration deals with the manipulation of shadows and darkness. Some of its powers may have creative liberties with how this is done, but they all share a common theme.



      But what does Thaumaturgy deal with?

      Why, the manipulation of: Blood, Weather, Plants, Fire, Water, Electricity, Technology, Physics, Curses and even Life itself.

      And that's just what I can list off the top of my head, without grabbing any books to double check.
      Last edited by Nyrufa; 06-13-2018, 05:03 PM.

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      • Originally posted by Nyrufa View Post


        You're going to have to try harder to clarify yourself here. How the hell does inflicting increasingly lethal damage every time you feed have to revolve around a plot hook? One key point of staving off the Beast is to not go around killing innocent people, which the other clans manage to accomplish by limiting their blood consumption. But a Giovanni inflicts (I want to say) twice as much damage to acquire the same amount of blood, which means if they don't want a mountain of corpses behind them (which would be ironic), then they'd have to subsist on half as much blood OR twice as many vessels as every other clan.


        I know what you mean about players glossing over the feeding aspect, because I've seen Story Tellers who just ask the players how much blood they want to drink from them and how many points they earn. But that doesn't change the fact that all vampires need blood to survive, and that Giovanni player is going to have to feed multiple times throughout the session if they wish to keep up their strength. That can really rack up a death toll if you aren't careful, thus leading to a host of problems not just for them, but for the rest of the city's kindred population.


        The Giovanni weakness doesn't have to be a plot hook. It's a prominent and recurring drawback to being a member of clan Giovanni, which they have to deal with multiple times every single night.
        It's pretty simple to gloss over the Giovanni weakness. For one you act as if the only way to acquire blood is by the Kiss. There are alternatives suck as siphoning blood from a vein. Just because the standard method of blood drawing doesn't work well for the Giovanni doesn't mean they don't have alternatives. Additionally, unless they are having a very active night they don't need to drink every single night as you have said. Between Dominate, Blood Bonds, and family wealth they shouldn't have too much trouble gaining blood as long as they don't fall into the old cliches of vampires drinking blood. So it is able to be glossed over by having the herd background, it just represents a different kind of herd.

        I also noticed that you didn't contend what I said about the Ventrue weakness needing to be as much of plot point as the Tremere weakness.

        The Tremere Weakness DOES have to be a plot hook, because the Tremere are under no compulsion to drink the blood of their fellow vampires (initiation ritual being the exception). When they choose to do so, it is exactly that; a conscious choice that the Tremere makes to indulge in the vitae of other kindred.

        In all cases that I've heard of, most vampires including the Tremere reserve a full scale blood bond to be used as a form of punishment. It's not something those in power just throw around because they feel like it. That kind of bull shit is what caused the first two Anarch revolts to happen in the first place. That means if your Tremere player finds themselves being forced into a blood bond that they didn't have at character generation, they screwed up somewhere during the course of the story and their superiors decided to bind them as a means of punishing their actions.

        Which is far more likely to be some kind of plot hook than drawing attention to yourself just because you took a couple more points of blood than you intended.
        I never said it had to be a full blood bond. So here is a question for you. Do you actually play up the two levels before a full bond? Those make interesting roleplay moments when we play that aspect of blood bonding. An example of how we do it is a vampire might require you to drink some of their blood to establish a partial bond in exchange for a favor or the Sheriff might require their Scourge to be partially bonded to them. This has a much bigger impact on a Tremere than it does any other clan and it would affect the dynamic between those two characters. Do those two examples sound like they need to be entire plot points? I don't think so, but I do think they open up the Tremere to a dangerous situation and allow for interesting roleplay situations and narratives.

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        • Originally posted by Nyrufa View Post


          But not to the same degree.

          Celerity is just a straight up speed boost, unless you get to the tier 6+ levels of mastery. And only vampires of generation 6 or lower can wield those.
          And if you play V20 Celerity it is also a Dex boost which is one of the most (and if you are playing a combat focused campaign, the most) important attributes in the game.

          And Obtenebration deals with the manipulation of shadows and darkness. Some of its powers may have creative liberties with how this is done, but they all share a common theme.
          Obtenebration cancels out a power specifically meant to see in pure darkness, reduces stamina to 0, can attack, make yourself intangible, etc.

          But what does Thaumaturgy deal with?

          Why, the manipulation of: Blood, Weather, Plants, Fire, Water, Electricity, Technology, Physics, Curses and even Life itself.

          And that's just what I can list off the top of my head, without grabbing any books to double check.
          It deals with magic and spells so having a variety of abilities makes sense considering its theme and has been said multiple times up to this point. The list isn't supposed to be a grab bag for players to just choose from. It's supposed to be difficult to learn new Paths and Rituals before any experience is even spent. It's called Story and Game Integration. That's one of the biggest flaws I've been seeing with the arguments against Thaumaturgy. It seems like people are just letting players choose whatever Paths and Rituals they want to know and ignore the 'rule' that limits it.

          Should individual Paths be worked on to balance their power? Most definitely. Should Rituals cost XP? Possibly.
          Last edited by stanlemon; 06-13-2018, 05:35 PM.

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          • Originally posted by stanlemon View Post

            I'll admit yes there are problems with Thaumaturgy but it is far from the only broken Discipline. Do you ban Celerity or Obtenebrate? Both those Disciplines are broken as well.
            Now this would be whataboutism.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Monalfie View Post
              Now this would be whataboutism.
              That wasn't my intention but I can see how it could be taken that way. My intention was to bring up the issue of scrapping one 'broken' Discipline while ignoring others that had clear issues and then calling the one they scrapped as they only broken Discipline. I've fully admitted to Thaumaturgy being broken (I think Path of Blood is one of the most powerful abilities in the game) but it is unfair to it being treated as the only problematic element when there are plenty of others.

              Personally I find simply removing it from the game to be a fairly lazy way of handling it. I instead prefer to follow the game's own instructions plus some house ruling to mitigate some of the more problematic Paths. If someone doesn't want to deal with it in their game that's fine by me but saying that people who do want to utilize it only want a broken ability or 'love' the Tremere is fairly insulting when there are plenty of other ways to powergame.

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              • Originally posted by Monalfie View Post
                Whatever works at your table works, I don't truly care how you conduct your games.
                See we agree.

                As to the last argument it was in this thread or the other this read the last month I think 2 people thought it was fair based on all the hard work it took and they were proud of their character.

                Some people think the fluff balances it, others think the fluff shouldn't affect them since they didn't get flaw points, I think at least one poster thinks it makes them feared and respected, advantage Tremere!

                I say you be you, we'll be us I don't care how you run your games but saying Tremere suck in a why are Tremere hated thread seems perfectly fine, and I still realize your free to disagree. You could think rituals are too much effort and let them be cast with a few words, or think since it's a clan discipline paths shoudn't need a teacher or rituals for that matter.

                I'll still think of the Tremere and blood sorcery disciplines as over powered flawless vampires who go against the mages can no longer cast spells when they become vampires. and that again is why I hate the Tremere

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                • OK. two tangents:

                  First)

                  To everyone posting "fixes" for the Tremere: you're only proving why people hate them. To everyone talking about other Clans and Discplpines? You hate the Tremere whether you admit it or not. It's that simple. We've long since moved past any actual attempt to (1) understand why people don't like the Tremere, and (2) if the justifications for disliking them are well founded. The reasons why are clear, and if we need to fix it, then you don't like how it is.

                  Second)

                  If you actually want to make discussions about the Tremere better, I suggest focusing on the following: Make the Tremere less work to use, not more. Because ultimately, that's the problem. The Tremere are work, not fun. Yes, yes, subjective. But whether it's having to deal with the shitty backstory of the Tremere making no sense but you have to pay attention to it because it's the only way to deal with the current Clan politics, or the Clan politics being far too intrusive and controlling creating more work for the ST to deal with, or the giant steaming mess that is Thaumaturgy (regardless of any other Disciplines being problems too)... more rules, more hoops to jump through, more sorting through Paths and Rituals to excise ones you don't like, more forcing the weakness to come up in pay, the more work suggestions cause? The more people that don't like the Tremere are written are going to hate them more with those 'fixes.'

                  If you want people to like using the Tremere, focus on actually making them more fun to play, to run, and to have other people in your group play. Not adding to the workload of just getting them to function.

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                  • Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                    OK. two tangents:

                    First)

                    To everyone posting "fixes" for the Tremere: you're only proving why people hate them. To everyone talking about other Clans and Discplpines? You hate the Tremere whether you admit it or not. It's that simple. We've long since moved past any actual attempt to (1) understand why people don't like the Tremere, and (2) if the justifications for disliking them are well founded. The reasons why are clear, and if we need to fix it, then you don't like how it is.
                    First) That is an incredibly condescending and self righteous exclamation. Using that logic I would hate all the clans. I don't, nor do I hate Tremere. Yes some justifications are well founded, others however are not as it seems clear that several of the problems are not and it is clear that they are simply being handled poorly either by the ST or Player, something that happens to other clans as well.

                    Second)

                    If you actually want to make discussions about the Tremere better, I suggest focusing on the following: Make the Tremere less work to use, not more. Because ultimately, that's the problem. The Tremere are work, not fun. Yes, yes, subjective. But whether it's having to deal with the shitty backstory of the Tremere making no sense but you have to pay attention to it because it's the only way to deal with the current Clan politics, or the Clan politics being far too intrusive and controlling creating more work for the ST to deal with, or the giant steaming mess that is Thaumaturgy (regardless of any other Disciplines being problems too)... more rules, more hoops to jump through, more sorting through Paths and Rituals to excise ones you don't like, more forcing the weakness to come up in pay, the more work suggestions cause? The more people that don't like the Tremere are written are going to hate them more with those 'fixes.'

                    If you want people to like using the Tremere, focus on actually making them more fun to play, to run, and to have other people in your group play. Not adding to the workload of just getting them to function.
                    Second)
                    Depends on how you go about it. It isn't that hard to say 'no' to a player. Let them do the work if they want to but if you are the ST and you don't want them learning a Path then just say no. Saying aspects about them are hard is pretty relative as for example I find utilizing the Ventrue weakness in game and making it mean something more difficult than utilizing the Tremere weakness.

                    Additionally on the mention of 'fixes' as you like to call them, how many times do 'fixes' in general come up for people to talk about on these forums? I've seen more arguments about Viscissitude than for Thaumaturgy here personally. Thaumaturgy is perfectly playable as it is but some people like to balance games and think of their own ways to work the rules.

                    EDIT: in retrospect simply saying that they are being handled poorly is hypocritical of me, so let me explain myself. The reason I say they are being handled poorly is because after reading this thread it seems like they let any Path or Ritual be known which the book says not to do. So I find arguments from people who do that to have little merit because they are the ones causing their own problems.
                    Last edited by stanlemon; 06-13-2018, 07:08 PM.

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                    • Originally posted by stanlemon View Post

                      And if you play V20 Celerity it is also a Dex boost which is one of the most (and if you are playing a combat focused campaign, the most) important attributes in the game.



                      Obtenebration cancels out a power specifically meant to see in pure darkness, reduces stamina to 0, can attack, make yourself intangible, etc.



                      It deals with magic and spells so having a variety of abilities makes sense considering its theme and has been said multiple times up to this point. The list isn't supposed to be a grab bag for players to just choose from. It's supposed to be difficult to learn new Paths and Rituals before any experience is even spent. It's called Story and Game Integration. That's one of the biggest flaws I've been seeing with the arguments against Thaumaturgy. It seems like people are just letting players choose whatever Paths and Rituals they want to know and ignore the 'rule' that limits it.

                      Should individual Paths be worked on to balance their power? Most definitely. Should Rituals cost XP? Possibly.

                      1 - Okay, I can see how that might be a problem when encountering Dex monkeys. But you're forgetting one very important thing: Celerity is a COMMON discipline that virtually every vampire can obtain with minimal effort. It's not held under lock and key and requires permission slips in hand written triplicate to learn, unlike Thaumaturgy.


                      2 - Yes, and all of those abilities revolve around the concept of darkness and the void. Like I said, some of its powers may have creative liberties, but they all share a common, underlying theme. But when it comes to Thaumaturgy, the concept is basically "name a power and chances are I can do it"



                      I get the feeling that you're reading my posts without fully comprehending what I (and others on here) are trying to explain to you.


                      I didn't refute the argument against the Ventrue weakness because I agree that targeting a Ventrue's food supply does sound like it might be used as a plot hook. However, I still stand by my statement that it's not something you can just gloss over, because it is a pretty it is still a pretty substantial weakness. Ventrue can not afford to be careless with their vessels, and they need to be on constant guard. Once their enemies find out what brand of mortal they feed from, they've got the Ventrue by the balls. Just take out their herd and watch as the self proclaimed Lord starves themselves into Torpor.


                      Who cares if a Tremere becomes bound to an elder Tremere? That's just par for the course when dealing with the Pyramid.

                      Who cares if a Tremere becomes bound to somebody who's not a Tremere? It's not like the clan isn't going to keep that shit monitored 24/7 with their long ranged telepathy and other information gathering tactics. If the Tremere's domitor tries anything funny, the clan will put a stop to it before their plan even gets off the ground!

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                      • Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                        This presumes we don't like the Tremere because of problem players, which isn't the case for at least a significant portion of us.
                        If you don't have a problem with Tremere players then you shouldn't need a 'fix'. The Tremere are very consistently written as taking a background shadow role in the Camarilla, often tolerated for their wares and their wrath feared, but they seldom occupy prominent roles. As far as Camarilla clans that are necessary to take a major role in a Chronicle, Tremere rank relatively low unless you write the Chronicle such that they have a major interest.

                        And if your problem is Tremere NPCs, well, you made them.

                        Originally posted by Monalfie View Post
                        Now this would be whataboutism.
                        Whataboutism gets a bad rap and is an unfairly used snarl word. If indeed the Tremere discipline is overpowered enough to warrant a ban(I don't think it is), are other similarly powerful disciplines as well(I don't think they are)? Answering yes to one and not the other reveals that someone making an argument that Tremere being banned for having easier access to an OP discipline is internally inconsistent in the absence of further justification, and they are obfuscating the real reason for making the argument that Tremere should be removed or fixed.

                        If you're making an assertion that X->Y, but there are other times where NOT(X->Y), you have explaining to do.

                        Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                        OK. two tangents:

                        First)

                        To everyone posting "fixes" for the Tremere: you're only proving why people hate them. To everyone talking about other Clans and Discplpines? You hate the Tremere whether you admit it or not. It's that simple. We've long since moved past any actual attempt to (1) understand why people don't like the Tremere, and (2) if the justifications for disliking them are well founded. The reasons why are clear, and if we need to fix it, then you don't like how it is.
                        I haven't suggested any fixes myself, but most of the suggestions are answers to problems that other people presented. Someone presenting a fix to your problem doesn't mean they have a problem.

                        Even were that not the case, suggesting that something can be improved isn't the equivalent of saying that you hate it.

                        Originally posted by Nyrufa View Post
                        1 - Okay, I can see how that might be a problem when encountering Dex monkeys. But you're forgetting one very important thing: Celerity is a COMMON discipline that virtually every vampire can obtain with minimal effort. It's not held under lock and key and requires permission slips in hand written triplicate to learn, unlike Thaumaturgy.
                        Sure, but I think everyone here knows who would win in a fight between Thaumaturgy 5(Path of Blood) and Celerity 5. Also if anything Celerity being OP and common is worse, not better.

                        2 - Yes, and all of those abilities revolve around the concept of darkness and the void. Like I said, some of its powers may have creative liberties, but they all share a common, underlying theme. But when it comes to Thaumaturgy, the concept is basically "name a power and chances are I can do it"
                        Tentacles made out of darkness that beat the crap out of people is kind of stretching the theme. Reminds me of the goofy firebender thruster legs in Avatar. And Thaumaturgy is more "name a power and I can probably spend a couple of years coming up with a much worse way to do that."

                        I didn't refute the argument against the Ventrue weakness because I agree that targeting a Ventrue's food supply does sound like it might be used as a plot hook. However, I still stand by my statement that it's not something you can just gloss over, because it is a pretty it is still a pretty substantial weakness. Ventrue can not afford to be careless with their vessels, and they need to be on constant guard. Once their enemies find out what brand of mortal they feed from, they've got the Ventrue by the balls. Just take out their herd and watch as the self proclaimed Lord starves themselves into Torpor.
                        Clan Tremere itself and the PCs obligation to them is pretty much all the plot hook you could ask for. The ST has free reign to make them do pretty much anything they want.

                        I also think most Ventrue would get desperate enough to drink Vitae or cash in boons to get new vessels before starving into torpor. Someone knowing your vessel requirements is inconvenient, not insurmountable, and the general recognition of property in the Camarilla is going to come into play. "Taking out" a fellow Vampires herd is easier said that done.


                        Who cares if a Tremere becomes bound to an elder Tremere? That's just par for the course when dealing with the Pyramid.
                        I agree the mechanical weakness is pretty meaningless, since this is the difference between 2 and 3 drinks which doesn't really matter when the Pyramid is punishing you for a failure. That said it's not really "par for the course", you need to screw up pretty bad for the Pyramid to force a full blood bond. They tried that before and found that local Regents having fully loyal cults devoted to them was not good for the clan. Likewise a stage 3 bond to the council also wasn't great, since you want your low level guys to have some individual initiative and thought; the Tremere generally embrace intelligent and ambitious people and want to make use of that ambition. I think an Elders stage 3 bond would break the Tremere's "global" bond, I believe, which is essentially the Elder saying his bond is more important than the Council's. A Tremere player being bound to a single Elder is a pretty big deal.

                        Who cares if a Tremere becomes bound to somebody who's not a Tremere? It's not like the clan isn't going to keep that shit monitored 24/7 with their long ranged telepathy and other information gathering tactics. If the Tremere's domitor tries anything funny, the clan will put a stop to it before their plan even gets off the ground!
                        The long range telepathy is a ritual, unless you mean Auspex 6. If you're fully blood bound to a non-Tremere and it wasn't part of some weird, Pyramid authorized scheme, the clan will probably just disappear you to Vienna never to be seen again, assuming they found out. If you're lucky they'll lock you in a basement somewhere until it wears off, or flay you with that one ritual that removes blood bonds. You think they're going to let an emotional slave with knowledge of Thaumaturgy out and about?
                        Last edited by Zanos; 06-13-2018, 08:28 PM.

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                        • Zanos Nope, according to the rules of V20, a Ventrue can only gain sustenance from blood taken from their specific type of vessel which is chosen at character creation. It also says the choice is permanent,which means they can't alter it when food becomes scarce. The only exception to this rule is drinking blood from other vampires. Outside of that, they will vomit up any other form of blood that does not come from their preferred vessel.


                          And I disagree that wiping out their herd would be difficult. The reason why wiping out another vampire's personal herd is difficult is because they don't have a restrictive palette. If any of their cattle dies, they can find some replacements. That's not something you can just do as a Ventrue when your preferred vessel is something like full blooded Native Americans, or 2nd born daughters, or people with heterochromiac eyes. These vessels are rare and precious to come by, and if somebody starts taking them out, you're going to be in deep shit.



                          I also disagree that creating tentacles of darkness is pushing the imagination when it comes to Obtenebration, since using shadows to attack people has been an old and iconic vampiric ability. Take Dracular's shadow, for example, which was sometimes shown to act with a life of its own and move independent of his body.


                          And I'd hardly consider the fire thrusters in Avatar to be goofy, since it makes logical sense for them to use fire in such a fashion. Hell, you've got combustion bending, which proves they can apply some form of throttle to the flames they produce.
                          Last edited by Nyrufa; 06-13-2018, 08:18 PM.

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                          • Originally posted by stanlemon View Post

                            I'll admit yes there are problems with Thaumaturgy but it is far from the only broken Discipline. Do you ban Celerity or Obtenebrate? Both those Disciplines are broken as well.
                            Vamps Like Us post 119.
                            "That said there is a need to compensate for the bad stuff like the Tremere and Celerity, and many many other things. The system was more mood than rules and I bet because of that this game has more house rules than just about any other. Giving an open ended number of powers to 1 discipline, at great discount I might add, while everything else was rigid is something in retrospect I bet they would take back if they could. It's bad design."

                            It's simple to alter a discipline dot for balance like level 2 Protean is lethal damage. Successes to hit don't add to damage. Thaumaturgy not so much.


                            I think I'm out on this thread though. To the offended my apologies, enjoy your game. I feel like I should respond when quoted yet I don't see the point arguing back and forth when nothing is actually going to change my opinion or the other posters. Never intended to post more than once. I'm not really going to double exp cost for blood sorcery, I just consider it Ars Magica and I'm playing VTM.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Nyrufa View Post
                              Zanos Nope, according to the rules of V20, a Ventrue can only gain sustenance from blood taken from their specific type of vessel which is chosen at character creation. It also says the choice is permanent,which means they can't alter it when food becomes scarce. The only exception to this rule is drinking blood from other vampires. Outside of that, they will vomit up any other form of blood that does not come from their preferred vessel.
                              I didn't suggest that they could? I was suggesting they could drink vampiric blood, aka Vitae. I'm pretty sure it's in v20 that they can drink Vitae with all the normal effects, I'll double check if that's not the case.

                              And cashing in boons for folks to get you some vessels that match your needs isn't insane for a Ventrue on their ropes.

                              And I disagree that wiping out their herd would be difficult. The reason why wiping out another vampire's personal herd is difficult is because they don't have a restrictive palette. If any of their cattle dies, they can find some replacements. That's not something you can just do as a Ventrue when your preferred vessel is something like full blooded Native Americans, or 2nd born daughters, or people with heterochromiac eyes. These vessels are rare and precious to come by, and if somebody starts taking them out, you're going to be in deep shit.
                              Murdering humans is bad news, for the Masquerade, for the Camarilla, and for your humanity. You're literally talking about mass murder for a lot of Ventrue, killing at the least dozens of people to get at him. That's a massacre.

                              Even if you aren't mudering them typically a Prince has granted someone who owns a herd some amount of "ownership" over the people in that herd, and screwing with other vampires herds without hiding it well or a really good reason is a great way to get Sheriff'd.

                              I also disagree that creating tentacles of darkness is pushing the imagination when it comes to Obtenebration, since using shadows to attack people has been an old and iconic vampiric ability. Take Dracular's shadow, for example, which was sometimes shown to act with a life of its own and move independent of his body.
                              I think Obtenebration is more about the mysteries of the Abyss then bludgeoning people to death with darkness, and I don't recall Dracula ever doing that. I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree.

                              And I'd hardly consider the fire thrusters in Avatar to be goofy, since it makes logical sense for them to use fire in such a fashion. Hell, you've got combustion bending, which proves they can apply some form of throttle to the flames they produce.
                              I just thought airbenders flying made a lot more sense. Super weird that every firebender can do it.

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                              • Originally posted by Vamps Like Us View Post
                                Just like blood magic is for casters, and shape changing is for werewolves in my current game. I actually thought about not having clans in the current game. Just humans, werewolves mages and vampires all using VTM....
                                That said there is a need to compensate for the bad stuff like the Tremere and Celerity, and many many other things.
                                It seems like you have a lot of significant issues with the system... and setting of V:TM.

                                While I don't want to discount your experience or opinion on Thaumaturgy and Tremere specifically, you may be a bit more radically separate to the general thoughts on Vampire as it stands. This makes it difficult to compare our experiences, and arguments with you, because we have significantly different base levels of acceptance with the game as it stands.
                                We may all be arguing from different starting points to yourself...

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