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Need a little help with chiminage.

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  • Need a little help with chiminage.

    So, I'm not amazing with spirits. Like, at all. I'm not terrible with them, but I'm definitely no expert either. I'm especially bad with coming up with chiminage for gifts and fetishes and such. Currently, I'm trying to think of a proper chiminage for the rank 4 Children of Gaia gift 'Strike the Air,' and for the life of me, I cannot do it. I was hoping some of you fine folk could help me out, brainstorm a little with me, etc.

    This is the description for the gift:

    The Child becomes the ultimate example of passive resistance. She is unable to attack an opponent, but is also unable to be hit, allowing her opponent to exhaust herself in an intricate dance of frustrated blows. A mongoose-spirit teaches this Gift.

    System: The player spends one Willpower point and rolls Wits + Athletics (difficulty equals the opponent's Willpower). For the duration of the scene, the opponent cannot strike the Garou, no matter how well he rolls. This Gift is canceled immediately if the werewolf attacks his opponent or if anyone else attacks on the Garou's behalf. This Gift will work on multiple opponents, but the player must spend a point of Willpower and make a new roll for each attacker.
    Last edited by Big papa; 01-16-2017, 05:34 PM.

  • #2
    I would make it less about the gift and make the chiminage based around what a mongoose would want. Fighting and killing a tainted Wyrm serpent to demonstrate the Garou's prowess might be a good (if obvious) choice.

    Alternatively you don't have to have a mongoose spirit teach the gift. If you have a peaceful spirit within Unicorn's brood already featured in your game, you could just have that spirit teach this gift instead.

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    • #3
      My thoughts were drawn to an acrobatic dance, having to impress the spirit with the physical display and setting aside of ego and potentially looking silly.

      If you want the Chiminage to be tied to the Gift, you might have it so they have to pass a challenge of agility, such as avoiding something without being touched by it (out run and avoid the Mongoose itself, or maybe things thrown at the student by their own pack) with their own prowess before the Mongoose will teach them to be even better at it.

      You could also join the idea of a snake-slaying with the take-no-touches, so they have to keep slaying serpents until they can bring one that didn't strike them even once (regardless of if it might do damage or not). They don't even necessarily need to be Wyrm-tainted serpents; normal spirits compete and predate upon each other, and sometimes earning the favor of one means pissing off another.
      Last edited by Yakecen-Sings; 01-16-2017, 09:25 PM.


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      • #4
        When you talk about Chiminage guidelines, there are generally of one of two reasons - flavor text or something substantial as a game balance for spirit favors. I would consider chiminage for Gifts to be more of the first than the second absent Gifts that the ST may consider to be overly powerful or something very special. I consider most Gifts to be fairly routine and would not require anything special to get them. In Axis-Mundi it states that spirit-teachers often do not accept chiminage, only that their Garou supplicants honor their teacher and follow through with their learning (that the Garou become successful and famed thus bestowing fame and respect to the spirit who taught them).

        For flavor text purposes, I suggest you concentrate on the Garou using a proper material correspondence when first summoning the spirit: have something physical that can be sacrificed to them that is appropriate to the spirit summoned. Mongoose spirits may want to see food left out for them to "eat", or that the Garou leaves a dead cobra or other enemy to them. Then ask the PC what the character does to learn the Gift from the spirit-teacher (I am a big believer in pushing a lot of these things back to the player; the ST already does so much to run the game that the PC needs to make some effort now and then to add to the story). For Strike the Air, an example could be allowing another Garou, kinfolk, or animal to pummel them while they "dance" or dodge the blows. At first, they absorb a lot of blows and probably bruise, but eventually under the spirit's guidance they learn to avoid them entirely. In order to best learn the lesson, it should be done in breed form - so that the bruises do not quickly heal and thus imparts a real lesson to the Garou while learning the Gift.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Yakecen-Sings View Post
          You could also join the idea of a snake-slaying with the take-no-touches, so they have to keep slaying serpents until they can bring one that didn't strike them even once (regardless of if it might do damage or not). They don't even necessarily need to be Wyrm-tainted serpents; normal spirits compete and predate upon each other, and sometimes earning the favor of one means pissing off another.
          Spirits do feed on each other, but in a circle-of-life, that is how it is supposed to be kinda way. Unless the werewolf is nomming on an engling, they aren't supposed to kill spirits that aren't evil, that isn't their purpose. Gaian spirits don't grow on trees in this day and age... for that and other reasons, destroying Gaian-aligned spirits at the behest of another Gaian spirit leaves a bad taste in my mouth. It seems counterproductive at best and dangerous at worst.

          Not that all that serve Gaia just sit around and sing Kumbaya, but given the state of the world, finding a corrupt spirit that is also an enemy of Mongoose shouldn't be too hard.

          Originally posted by Black Fox View Post
          When you talk about Chiminage guidelines, there are generally of one of two reasons - flavor text or something substantial as a game balance for spirit favors. I would consider chiminage for Gifts to be more of the first than the second absent Gifts that the ST may consider to be overly powerful or something very special. I consider most Gifts to be fairly routine and would not require anything special to get them. In Axis-Mundi it states that spirit-teachers often do not accept chiminage, only that their Garou supplicants honor their teacher and follow through with their learning (that the Garou become successful and famed thus bestowing fame and respect to the spirit who taught them).
          Interesting. I see this differently. I require fairly significant chiminage, probably for 90% of gifts in my campaign. I really like it as it gives me a chance to flesh out weird characters and develops allies that the PCs can call upon later. I had an earth spirit named Cenezoica, Grandaughter of Rorg (I am an unabashed fan of the Many-Taloned Hunter), who demanded that in order to teach our Ahroun a version of Alberich's Claws, he must raze a building with his bare hands. As she was really the spirit of a meteor who longed to wreak more havoc, the bigger the better. He ended up destroying three over the course of story, one of which was a fairly large church run by a corrupt clergyman. The spirit was pleased and ended up teaching him a secret as well as the gift, and now he deals additional levels of damage when using said gift. If the pack ever feels like dealing with earth spirits in the future, they already have one that likes them well enough too, which is handy.
          Last edited by The Laughing Stranger; 01-16-2017, 09:58 PM.

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          • #6
            Some other things.

            1) Garou almost always promise the spirit that they will not in turn teach the Gift they learned to other Garou. This is pretty automatic.

            2) Garou promise to perform some future homage to the spirit - future sacrifices, praise, or thanks. This might be necessary after the first time they use the Gift, the first month anniversary after learning it, and/or annual remembrance/thanks thereafter. It might even be a minor rite of its own. Most of this shouldn't impact the game, but makes good downtime and backstory.

            3) If the spirit teacher does require some kind of quest, make sure it is something you want to do for the game and is not something that consumes time for the ST and PCs without increasing the fun and enjoyability of the game.

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            • #7
              The Laughing Stranger; I should have been more clear that I didn't mean destroying other spirits to appease it. That's actually relatively difficult to do, and not what Garou ought to be up to besides. The engling part was implicit for me, and I should have specified. I also meant physical snakes as an option.

              Thanks for bringing that up, it's an important thing to mention and have clarified.


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              • #8
                Do you guys usually have the rank of the gift in question play a role in the magnitude of the chiminage?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Yakecen-Sings View Post
                  The Laughing Stranger; I should have been more clear that I didn't mean destroying other spirits to appease it. That's actually relatively difficult to do, and not what Garou ought to be up to besides. The engling part was implicit for me, and I should have specified. I also meant physical snakes as an option.

                  Thanks for bringing that up, it's an important thing to mention and have clarified.
                  I gotcha now. I have definitely used that sort of chiminage in my own game- a Bone Gnawer went around killing real-world barn cats in order to appease a rat spirit.

                  Originally posted by Big papa View Post
                  Do you guys usually have the rank of the gift in question play a role in the magnitude of the chiminage?
                  Yep, I typically do, but it is just a rule of thumb, nothing hard and fast. Learning 1st level gifts should be pretty easy. Maybe a straightforward chore or small offering. 2nd level might be a riddle contest or a more challenging service. Higher level gifts might require substantial offerings or grand gestures, and often the spirits that teach them are potent and dangerous, like Totem Avatars.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Big papa View Post
                    Do you guys usually have the rank of the gift in question play a role in the magnitude of the chiminage?
                    I do as well. Just seemed like how it should go. It's been that in every game I've ever played.


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