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  • Toreador Flaws

    Did the Toreador flaw switch from general beauty to specific art types somewhere along the way? I see it written both ways. I had the first edition in the 90's and it was general beauty then, and I thought my green hardback (revised?) had it general beauty then too, but I see specific art types most frequently when I search online.

    Also, the way I see the general beauty fascination written, it seems like the Toreador would never leave the house. It feels like it's the most up to the ST of all the flaws. They even leave it vague with "truly beautiful" in versions I've seen.

    Have you seen any good alternatives that are still in the spirit of the Toreador but that have a bit more concrete triggers?

    The bloodlines computer game went with the sentimentality/closest to humans thing and doubled Humanity losses. What else have you seen or done in your groups over the decades?

  • #2
    The V20 weakness has changed the wording slightly to "truly remarkable" instead of beautiful. This, to me, seems to imply the experience is unique, novel, or in some way truly special. So while a Toreador's house might be full of beautiful things, the Toreador has seen them so often they ceased to be truly remarkable and are just beautiful. Toreador antitribu instead run into needing to roll to not stop and inflict emotional or physical pain when given the opportunity. The antitribu weakness and the Ishtarri bloodline from Kindred of the Ebony Kingdom which they instead have a vice that overwhelms them even manifesting physically(a gluttony would be very obese for example) both are slightly more specific triggers, but still fairly broad. Other than the bloodline game I have not personally seen a different way of handling their weakness.

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    • #3
      So did the "one specific art type" flaw appear and then get lost to a new edition and I just see it still living on online? Or are people just wording it oddly?

      The remarkable thing makes more sense. You could see a bunch of Appearance 4 and 5 models at a fashion show and be OK, but if one was wearing some new fashion the designer rolled 10 successes on, the Toreador might get stunned by the new art.

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      • #4
        I would say it might be Art (Painting, Sculpture, Music, Dance, Drawing, Graffiti...etc) I always talk with my players and we come to a descision together, If I think the weakness is too soft, as not likely to come by, I'll refuse, and the same if I think it will hinder the game, because his character will be constantly mesmerize by his weakness. Our last game in modern time, the toreador in the group was a Photographer and his character had some kind of twisted fetish to dead bodies. more specifically recently murdered woman, the more brutal the kill, the more entrancing it was for his character. But any dead body would have an effect on his character.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by TheUnknownMourner View Post
          So did the "one specific art type" flaw appear and then get lost to a new edition and I just see it still living on online?
          I think it is something that never appeared in print. It's just that a lot of players have the tendency to create a character we might as well call a Fishtorrie. A one-dimensional Toreador whose entire character is just an obsession with a particular type of art and nothing much else. And I guess a lot of STs just went with it. Cause I don't remember reading their weakness ever being described in any other way than being about beauty in its most general meaning. A Toreador is supposed to be the kind of vampire that loses an hour cause he got enthralled by a plastic bag moving in the wind.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Malkavian87 View Post

            A Toreador is supposed to be the kind of vampire that loses an hour cause he got enthralled by a plastic bag moving in the wind.

            lol made me think of this



            Which is mocking a scene from American Beauty for people who haven't seen the movie.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by TheUnknownMourner View Post
              So did the "one specific art type" flaw appear and then get lost to a new edition and I just see it still living on online? Or are people just wording it oddly?
              It seems to be a common misconception, along with all Toreador having an artform they specialise in.


              Craig Oxbrow
              The Trinity Continuum freelancer

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              • #8
                Originally posted by TheUnknownMourner View Post
                So did the "one specific art type" flaw appear and then get lost to a new edition and I just see it still living on online? Or are people just wording it oddly?
                In Vampire the Masquerade the Toreador weakness has always been that they are enthralled by objects of great beauty. However in Vampire the Requiem, the weakness for the Toreador Bloodline of the Daeva Clan is in fact that a particular kind of art makes them utterly enthralled, and that's in addition to the normal Daeva weakness. That might be what you're seeing online.

                Originally posted by Arcaneumkiller View Post
                I would say it might be Art (Painting, Sculpture, Music, Dance, Drawing, Graffiti...etc) I always talk with my players and we come to a descision together, If I think the weakness is too soft, as not likely to come by, I'll refuse, and the same if I think it will hinder the game, because his character will be constantly mesmerize by his weakness. Our last game in modern time, the toreador in the group was a Photographer and his character had some kind of twisted fetish to dead bodies. more specifically recently murdered woman, the more brutal the kill, the more entrancing it was for his character. But any dead body would have an effect on his character.
                Generally i prefer a more open-ended approach to the weakness in Masquerade. It's not one specific thing obsession that holds my Toreador enthralled, but rather any number of things that can appeal to her sense of aesthetics. Generally i let the ST know which things my character likes from the way i roleplay her, and also the fact that i will trigger the weakness myself if i encounter something that i think would do it. Thus far in the game my Toreador has had to roll for her weakness seven times, of which five were triggered my me, and two by the ST. Both of the times the ST called for it i completely agreed that it was appropriate. The last time, not only did i trigger the weakness, i decided that my character didn't want to resist it and so didn't even bother rolling.

                Originally posted by Craig Oxbrow View Post
                It seems to be a common misconception, along with all Toreador having an artform they specialise in.
                The second misconception is amusing because sometimes a player wishes to make a Toreador who is not an artist, but they think all Toreador have to be artists, so they'll say the character's special artform is something like "Martial Arts", "War", or "Politics". For my part, my current Toreador is a Merchant Princess on the Path of Tyrants. While she is good at some kinds of art because she used to be a courtesan, she does not consider herself an artist nor practices art for its own sake. Mostly she is interested in amassing power for herself by way of ambitious mercantile enterprise and high stakes political brinkmanship.
                Last edited by Lys; 06-09-2016, 07:44 PM.

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                • #9
                  As far as I remember, the weakness has always been general beauty, except for the antitribu that have their own variations (broader perception of beauty and ugliness, reflexive/compulsive cruelty, taste for pain).

                  The main difference between the old ones and the new ones is that the old ones were more involved in the Torrie's concept, but at the same time, a real hindrance for the ST who had to describe the scene without explicitly stating that the PC was entranced. In turn, the player had to decide whether or not to roll for resistance (or spend WP) in advance.

                  Furthermore, the clanbook stated that resisting "too often" led the Torrie to be more prone to Frenzy. Meaning that entrancement was almost at the same level as drinking blood, and the Torrie was encouraged to indulge.

                  It was a nice and immersive set-up, but very detrimental to gameplay, potentially annoying for other players and game-breaking in certain circumstances.

                  The later versions (as I understand it), simplified the mechanism to a simple entrancement and resisting (without further complications).

                  Personally, I prefer the older ones. I usually play with both clan and antitribu weakness with the Frenzy penalty. Of course, I have to use signs and gestures to communicate with the ST without bothering the others.

                  The game-breaking aspect is still present, though. Sometimes at the ST's own will:
                  His last idea was to expose the PCs to a Methuselah (Appearance 8) made after the Vileblood Queen (bloodborne). The Torrie freezed in Awe while the rest of the Pack ran away in terror.
                  Last edited by Pleiades; 06-10-2016, 05:00 AM.


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                  • #10
                    I must admit I have never understood the logic behind the Toreador flaw. If someone knew that encountering a given stimuli was likely to provoke a state similar to a petit mal seizure, even if that state were pleasurable, shouldn't they seek to avoid the stimuli? I get that some would still seek out the pleasurable aspects of the flaw, much as an addict seeks drugs, but shouldn't that lead to a more mature, functional faction of the clan that intentionally eschews the arts and beauty as a means of mitigating the flaw?

                    Toreador hanging out in museums, galleries and performance spaces makes about as much sense as Baali frequenting cathedrals, Garou collecting antique silver place settings and Fae working as blacksmiths.

                    The flaws of the Assamite Viziers or the Obertus Revenant family seem like closer fits for the clan culture of the Toreador.

                    Another alternative would be to turn the flaw around. Most people find it grating to find themselves hearing a child torturing a violin lesson, near a person composed entirely of body odor, or confined in a filthy room. Perhaps a Toreador must spend a point of willpower in order to take any action which requires a roll while in an unpleasant environment or in the presence of ugliness. Not spending the point results in an automatic failure on the roll. The Toreador is fully capable of being around ugliness, but unlife is just so much more pleasant in nice surroundings. I think this synchs up with Toreador clan culture better than the current flaw.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Nosimplehiway View Post
                      The flaws of the Assamite Viziers or the Obertus Revenant family seem like closer fits for the clan culture of the Toreador.
                      hmm,

                      How do bloodline/revenant flaws work again?

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                      • #12
                        The Obertus revenant family suffers from either the derangement Perfectionism or develop an Obsession with a particular area of interest, such as "Cainite Lore of Pre-Columbian America", "Semiotics of 8th century Byzantine Icons" or "Erythrocyte fragility". They are presented as arcane scholars on the edges of the Sabbat. Shifting their Obsession into artistic or cultural topics would make sense for the Toreador.

                        The Assamite Vizier weakness, well... it's an Assamite weakness, so it varies slightly from version to version. Usually it's presented again as the Obsession derangement, but focused on the Vizier's highest rated intellectual or artistic Ability, so it tends to be broader than the Obertus. Common choices are Finance, Politics, Academics, Crafts or Performance. In Revised, the use of Aura Sight could reveal the nature of this Obsession, giving enemies considerable leverage.

                        Either of these flaws would provide focus to Toreador characters, helping to better define them. It's less likely to pop up in random out of tone contexts, like the fashion model celebutante who has to spend a point of willpower to tear herself away from an audiobook of Marcel Proust's "In Search of Lost Time". It would be a real flaw in the right context, though; the celebutante would simply not be available for coterie business during spring fashion week. Also, having an obsession is doubly restrictive. On the one hand, it drives behavior, and on the other it makes the character predictable and manipulable to rivals.

                        Of course, both the Obertus (Obertuses? Oberti? Obertum?) and the Viziers maintain they are completely normal and sane, albeit gifted with an intense focus.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Nosimplehiway View Post
                          I must admit I have never understood the logic behind the Toreador flaw. If someone knew that encountering a given stimuli was likely to provoke a state similar to a petit mal seizure, even if that state were pleasurable, shouldn't they seek to avoid the stimuli? I get that some would still seek out the pleasurable aspects of the flaw, much as an addict seeks drugs, but shouldn't that lead to a more mature, functional faction of the clan that intentionally eschews the arts and beauty as a means of mitigating the flaw? Toreador hanging out in museums, galleries and performance spaces makes about as much sense as Baali frequenting cathedrals, Garou collecting antique silver place settings and Fae working as blacksmiths.
                          It makes perfect sense that the Toreador would surround themselves with great beauty on account of their flaw. Remember that their fugues are triggered by exceptional beauty, but what is exceptional is entirely dependent on context. By regularly experiencing great beauty Toreador shift thier normal context and make the remarkable seem commonplace. They become jaded such that fewer things stand out to them as truly astounding. Eschewing the arts and beauty wouldn't mitigate the flaw, it would make them more susceptible to it. If all a Toreador sees is mediocrity and mundanity, then sight of anything beautiful will seem grandiose by comparison and hold them utterly entranced. It's like how Wax Fang's The Majestic goes,

                          "A sight for sore eyes to the blind would be awful majestic
                          It would be the most beautiful thing that they ever had seen
                          It would cause such surprise it would make all of their minds electric

                          How could anyone tell them that some things are not what they seem?"


                          You can't avoid beauty, it's everywhere, and the more you try the more vulnerable you are to it. The safest thing to do is to become inured to it, to let yourself become so used to the merely exceptional that it takes the truly astonishing to move you. That is the tragedy of the Toreador, their own personal horror. They have to become jaded and critical, to learn to see smallest of flaws in things, to nitpick and dismiss everything around them until there is very little left that brings them true joy and satisfaction. Because it is in those moments of true joy that they are most vulnerable. So Toreador Clan culture is all about building up tolerance to their own weakness by feeding it with abandon until it chokes on itself. Which is why they tend to become a bickering bunch of bitter cavillous harridans.
                          Last edited by Lys; 06-10-2016, 11:32 PM.

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                          • #14
                            In general, the toreador don't see it as an actual curse. Not any more than you would describe someone who liked sports, for example, as cursed because whenever their home team had a game they became totally engrossed in watching the game. The clan believes that they have some essential spark of humanity that all other vampires lack, because they are capable of being drawn in by beauty and grace while the other clans are dead inside and just see an object de art. Most of clan malkavian don't see their madness exactly as a curse, but a side effect of their broader perspective. Same with clan Venture, they have an inconvenient feeding restriction, but really that's like someone complaining that they are cursed to only eat caviar or some other amazing food that fills your dietary needs completely. Sure, sometimes it would be convenient to be able to grab MacDonnald the janitor and drink because you are in a hurry, but ugh. That's what poor people would do.


                            When one is accustomed to privilege, equality seems like oppression.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nosimplehiway View Post
                              I must admit I have never understood the logic behind the Toreador flaw. If someone knew that encountering a given stimuli was likely to provoke a state similar to a petit mal seizure, even if that state were pleasurable, shouldn't they seek to avoid the stimuli? I get that some would still seek out the pleasurable aspects of the flaw, much as an addict seeks drugs, but shouldn't that lead to a more mature, functional faction of the clan that intentionally eschews the arts and beauty as a means of mitigating the flaw?
                              Well, it depends what you think you're supposed to do with your life. As far as Toreador are concerned, indulging their flaw is like indulging blood.

                              It's why they exist.


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

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