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  • Playing Lupus & Metis

    I know there's a book coming out that's supposed to touch on this (Changing Ways?), but until that's released I wanted stir up some discussion on playing characters born outside of human society. I'll post up my thoughts on playing them later once I've mulled over it some more.

    Lupus
    Many games I've stumbled across online outright ban lupus, usually on some account that they're 'snowflakes,' draw in weird roleplayers, or that they are too difficult to play/don't fit in. Guides like this imply that they're dimwitted (although their writing on the cognitive abilities of wolves seems questionable at best) and that it's unrealistic for a lupus character to speak competently or even grasp human cultures without a decade of study.

    Thoughts? How do you think lupus are best played? If you ban them from your games, why?

    Metis
    Another one that might be tough to portray. Not only raised up in an alien culture, but one that almost universally despises them for what they are, all while dealing with Rage from birth. I've not seen them banned as much as lupus, but they're often restricted.

    Same questions as before.


  • #2
    Well, I tend to restrict lupus characters to experience players and forbid metis characters because I do not want to deal with the social issues. With the changes reported from W20, the ratio of homid-to-lupus is 8:1, and I imagine that the metis are even rarer than the lupus because they are forbidden by the Litany, so I generally use a lupus-to-homid ratio of 8:1, so the homid-lupis-metis ratio in my games are 64:8:1. Certain groups (Black Spiral Dancers and Hakken) will reverse the proportion of Metis and Lupus, and I think that I would allow a metis in a Hakken game, since the Hakken belong to the Beast Courts rather than the Garou Nation.

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    • #3
      Lupus Garou are not wolves just as homid Garou are not humans. Lupus characters obviously do not have the benefit of a dozen or so years living among humans, but neither are they animals. I don't penalize lupus characters adapting to human cultures any more than I penalize homid characters from being able to act likes wolves.

      The spirit half of the Garou can be used to explain a fairly quick adaption to humanity. While the few players I've had of lupus characters have wanted to play rather direct and guileless characters, neither were they dimwitted. They may not understand the complexities of human society, but they can speak normally in human tongue by the time they are Cliath. Any limitations they have are because of how the PC wants them to be.

      One wants to see the differences between the breeds, but not to the point where lupus characters cannot interact with humanity and "pass".

      I think the main reason for such guides is to prevent players from picking lupus simply to get the 5 Gnosis and not really wanting to play an alien mindset.

      Comment


      • #4
        I definitely fall into the camp that a Lupus is gonna be struggling to do anything that's too human for them atleast until they hit fostern and have had to deal with a bunch of homids.

        I don't begrudge players that find the idea frustrating and try to minimize it but I'm just left wondering what's the bloody point of playing one then.

        As for metis, depends on the tribe how prevalent they are and how they'll be treated (mostly like shit though). Big thing I do like to bring up is the stigma that metis turn to the wyrm in droves compared to the other breeds (admitedly that is because of how horrible their lives get, but that's the beauty of werewolf: Garou are cunts).

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Black Fox View Post
          I think the main reason for such guides is to prevent players from picking lupus simply to get the 5 Gnosis and not really wanting to play an alien mindset.
          Depending on the nature of the game in question, lupus are equally likely to be banned/restricted under the justification of keeping them rare as the setting dictates; since such rulings usually come out of larger group play instead of normal TT group sized play. The frequency of this in such games is definitely the combination of these two factors.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Cantankerous Bees View Post
            I don't begrudge players that find the idea frustrating and try to minimize it but I'm just left wondering what's the bloody point of playing one then.
            Personal example?

            One of my lupus Philodox PCs spent a lot of his time training to become a Cliath working on being able to pass as human so he could understand the homids he was going to be expected to be able to be a judge over. It was his duty to Gaia to fulfill his Auspice's role by being able to put himself in a homid's shoes. It also made him that much better at representing his lupus packmate that completely disagreed with the value in such things to all the homids that also weren't getting deep in touch with their wolf-side.

            The point of playing a lupus that can pass as a homid is... because they're still passing even if convincingly. Passing isn't the same as being.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

              Personal example?

              One of my lupus Philodox PCs spent a lot of his time training to become a Cliath working on being able to pass as human so he could understand the homids he was going to be expected to be able to be a judge over. It was his duty to Gaia to fulfill his Auspice's role by being able to put himself in a homid's shoes. It also made him that much better at representing his lupus packmate that completely disagreed with the value in such things to all the homids that also weren't getting deep in touch with their wolf-side.

              The point of playing a lupus that can pass as a homid is... because they're still passing even if convincingly. Passing isn't the same as being.
              That's fair counterpoint, and it sounds like a good character arc for a lupus (It should probably be mentioned I normally play/run from first change onwards).

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Mongoose View Post
                Lupus
                Many games I've stumbled across online outright ban lupus, usually on some account that they're 'snowflakes,' draw in weird roleplayers, or that they are too difficult to play/don't fit in. Guides like this imply that they're dimwitted (although their writing on the cognitive abilities of wolves seems questionable at best) and that it's unrealistic for a lupus character to speak competently or even grasp human cultures without a decade of study.

                Thoughts? How do you think lupus are best played? If you ban them from your games, why?

                Metis
                Another one that might be tough to portray. Not only raised up in an alien culture, but one that almost universally despises them for what they are, all while dealing with Rage from birth. I've not seen them banned as much as lupus, but they're often restricted.

                Same questions as before.
                That Lupus guide seems terrible. I didn't get much past the first couple of paragraphs though, so many it gets better (doubtful). Personally, I've never had an issue with Lupus players. There are some general guidelines, but playing Lupus shouldn't be outright banned imo. If a player wants to play one, I usually go over why they want to and what they thinking coming from the Lupus breed will add to their concept. If the character sounds interesting and they aren't choosing Lupus simply for the higher Gnosis, then there is no issue. Lupus characters tend to be more direct in their approaches (a broad generalization), but that doesn't make them stupid by any means. And the human culture thing isn't a big deal. If you are playing a game where the character start out at Rank 1, then the Lupus will have already gone through their introduction to human society, prior to their Rite of Passage. They should be as good on 2 legs as Homids are on 4 by that point, which is to say: passable.

                For Metis, the only requirement I tend to have is that the player needs to be previously familiar with the Werewolf setting. If you are going to play a character that grew up their whole life in the Garou Nation, then the player should have some understanding of the Garou Nation and what they are getting into playing a Metis. And again, the question of what this Breed brings to their character concept. If I have a completely new player that really wants to play a Metis (its only happened once), I asked them to play a Homid for the first part of the game to get a feel for it and then they retired the character later once they knew more about how Garou society works.

                In any case, I have never understood the heavy restrictions/outright bans that some STs put on playing these Breeds.


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                • #9
                  Well, when a player plays a character who began as an animal, I want them to be able to ropleplay someone who is still occasionally confused and frustrated with human society despite having a few years of practice. Just think about dating, it really takes most people years of dating practice before they start to understand the needs of their partners (and some people require decades of practice). Now, most lupus are probably not going to be doing much dating, but it is an example of how players should understand the confusion and frustration that lupus characters should experience with human society.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Aya Tari View Post
                    Well, when a player plays a character who began as an animal, I want them to be able to ropleplay someone who is still occasionally confused and frustrated with human society despite having a few years of practice. Just think about dating, it really takes most people years of dating practice before they start to understand the needs of their partners (and some people require decades of practice). Now, most lupus are probably not going to be doing much dating, but it is an example of how players should understand the confusion and frustration that lupus characters should experience with human society.
                    I agree with this completely. Though the Lupus Breed character does at least have a baseline to start from.

                    From what I've seen about how some view Lupus, they think the Breed should be 100% lost when it comes to humans. Seemingly solely for the reason that they were not born human. And that I disagree with. Same as a Homid is going to run into some social issues when it comes to wolves. That doesn't mean they don't have at least a rudimentary understanding of what's going on. Since in both case, the being is half-human/half-wolf.


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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Aya Tari View Post
                      Well, when a player plays a character who began as an animal, I want them to be able to ropleplay someone who is still occasionally confused and frustrated with human society despite having a few years of practice. Just think about dating, it really takes most people years of dating practice before they start to understand the needs of their partners (and some people require decades of practice). Now, most lupus are probably not going to be doing much dating, but it is an example of how players should understand the confusion and frustration that lupus characters should experience with human society.
                      I like to give a lot of leeway in how this plays out though.

                      Dating oddly came up with the character I was discussing earlier. He wasn't particularly confused by human dating. He was confused that homids would continue to try to follow those ideas with their kin when Garou are capable of skipping all of that. He determined that human mating as naturally inefficient and difficult because humans reproduce so easily they have to do a lot to impress mates, but he also felt it was generally very ease to figure out if two humans were a decent couple because he would just watch their body language and ignore all the wordy cultural baggage.

                      There can be a lot of nuance here besides, "humans are confusing."

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                      • #12
                        I have a concept for a Lupus character that figured out homid mating as "Give her food, listen to her talk, make her laugh, and hope she invites you in".

                        Unfortunately he neglected to mention to his metis grandson that if she doesn't invite you in, to move on to the next female. So this poor metis is stuck in the freind zone. But as a metis, he's used to not getting what he wants.

                        Also had a homid be very confused as to why this wolf kin kept nipping at him. "obviously she didn't want me around, but when I ran away she kept following me."

                        " did you smell her ass? "

                        " why would I smell her ass? "

                        " to see if she was in heat. "

                        "..."

                        I guess my point is, sex is confusing for all breeds. And it is possible for all breeds to figure out the mating habits of one of the others.
                        Last edited by wonderandawe; 01-15-2017, 08:02 PM.


                        Are you ready to rage? Discover if you are Brave Enough to fight for the soul of the world.

                        The Werewolf: the Apocalypse Quest updates on Mondays. All are welcome to vote.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mongoose View Post
                          I know there's a book coming out that's supposed to touch on this (Changing Ways?), but until that's released I wanted stir up some discussion on playing characters born outside of human society. I'll post up my thoughts on playing them later once I've mulled over it some more.

                          Lupus
                          Many games I've stumbled across online outright ban lupus, usually on some account that they're 'snowflakes,' draw in weird roleplayers, or that they are too difficult to play/don't fit in. Guides like this imply that they're dimwitted (although their writing on the cognitive abilities of wolves seems questionable at best) and that it's unrealistic for a lupus character to speak competently or even grasp human cultures without a decade of study.

                          Thoughts? How do you think lupus are best played? If you ban them from your games, why?

                          That guide is seriously terrible. And a reason why I started trying to get lupus being more worldly in games in the first place.


                          I have two writings where I try to tackle how to play either breed;

                          http://demonsanddogweeds.tumblr.com/...-playing-lupus

                          http://demonsanddogweeds.tumblr.com/...ayplay-a-metis


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                          • #14
                            While the few players I've had of lupus characters have wanted to play rather direct and guileless characters, neither were they dimwitted.
                            Precisely how I wanted to word it. A Lupus is probably going to view the world through the eyes of an animal. But animals aren't necessarily dumb. A human doesn't really know how to track a scent trail and participate in pack hunting like a wolf (not saying a Homid doesn't adapt to that as well). I've had a bad experience with a Lupus player before, so I kind of get the worry some ST's might have. But generally find them workable.

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                            • #15
                              So... What potential issues would a Metis have to deal with if they grew up in an "Ideal" situation? By ideal situation, I mean grew up in an Accepting Tribe with loving caregivers.

                              1. They are still rage-filled monsters with teeth and claws. Toddlers can be difficult to deal with during a temper tantrum. I can't imagine having to deal with a toddler killing machine.

                              2. They are being raised by rage-filled monsters. Normal parents can loose their temper raising their children. I can see a situation with a young metis escalate to both parent and child in frenzy.

                              3. Kinfolk could be injured. A solution for problem two is to have a kinfolk involved in the raising of the metis child. Of course you run in to problem one. Kinfolk are more vulnerable than Garou. A metis may have guilt about hurting/killing someone they loved.

                              4. Helicopter parenting. I could see a Garou parents who loves their metis child wish to protect them from poor treatment from the rest of the Garou Nation. While the metis wishes to join their own pack and live their own life, the parent would want their metis child to stay in their pack.

                              5. Learned Helplessness. This is a problem with children with disabilities. I can see this also happen to a Metis.

                              6. Self Hatred. A metis child isn't stupid. They are fully aware what their guardians/parents gave up to raise them. They know that their birth had a negative impact on their parent's standing in the Garou Nation. You could tell a child that it isn't their fault, but children will still blame themselves.

                              7. Identifying with another breed. A Garou parent may want to prepare their metis child for their first change. Teach them how to be human/wolf. I can see a Garou parent going overboard to the point where a metis would think of themselves more as homid/lupus than metis. They may hate other metis for reminding them of who they truly are.

                              8. Lack of social skills. Metis still need to be kept away from society. You could home school them. Let them run though the sept territory, but odds are they will not have anyone their own age to interact with.


                              Are you ready to rage? Discover if you are Brave Enough to fight for the soul of the world.

                              The Werewolf: the Apocalypse Quest updates on Mondays. All are welcome to vote.

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