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  • Klaives through the Editions

    This thread is about klaives, but this post is specifically about how klaives have changed over the editions. This is something I just noticed when rereading an old sourcebook, and I realized that it portrayed klaives differently than what was in my mind. So I just reread the three Player Guides and noticed their inconsistencies. While some of these can be reconciled with some effort so that all versions are correct, there are some inconsistencies that just can't. They're opposed to each other, perhaps intentionally so. This is just a legacy of the line changing developers as new people had new ideas that they thought were better than the old ones. It's just a fact with the changes in editions. To an extent "canon" was always subject to change.

    I'm not sure when the term klaive was first used. In the first edition corebook, there was only a fetish called a "silver sword". Later this would become the Grand Klaive. In the first edition Player's Guide, they don't even list a klaive in their list of new fetishes, but they have a section on klaive dueling. Maybe they just forgot to define the new fetish as an oversight (or I somehow missed it)? Anyway, we're told very little about them, but here are the major points
    • They are a fetish of war
    • Duels are fought to the death with klaives when they have conflicts that cannot be resolved
    • Usually they are made out of silver, but some are made of other materials
    • The first klaive was made by the Fianna Ahround Gwydion Wyrmslayer by binding a falcon spirit into a long knife
    • Gwydion taught his fellow Fianna how to create the same kind of fetish
    • However, it was a group of Silver Fangs - the Silverforgers - who first made a silver klaive
    • The Silverforgers are a group of Silver Fang philodoxes who learned the secrets of Silver from Luna herself
    • Armed with these secrets, the Silverforgers were able to calm the spirits of Silver which allowed them to forge these silver blades, even though it still gave them horrible scars and burn wounds
    • However, today the art of silverforging is dying as the Silver Fangs jealously guard their secrets and almost no new students are taught these arts
    • Non-Silver Fang Garou do manage to obtain silver klaives over the years, but the secret to do so belong to the Silver Fangs and the other tribes make non-silver klaives
    • It's mentioned that attuning the fetish is beyond a simple bond, and the spirit in the klaive will come to know its wielder and help him in combat
    The text seems to assume that klaives are frequent enough that both participants in serious disputes to the death can use them. We're given some special actions while using a klaive, but that is it. While the basics will stay the same in future editions, certain specifics will begin to change as certain elements are dropped entirely, new information added, and other things slightly change. The end result creates noticeable differences.

  • #2
    In the second edition, we're given new information.
    • Klaive dueling gains a name, klaivaskar. (Was this mentioned in any previous book?)
    • Klaives are sacred items given to Garou who may one day bear burden of leadership. They are symbols of status and authority
    • Klaive dueling are the means by which the most serious disputes are settled
    • Klaivaskar is a modern manifestation of the ancient Rite of Grievance (though I don't think this rite is ever actually detailed)
    • Klaives are most prominent among three tribes - Fianna, Silver Fangs, and Shadow Lords. Red Talons have the least, Children of Gaia often see them as symbols of strife among Garou.
    • Since the fall of the White Howlers, it has become acceptable to use klaives against these fallen Garou
    • Klaives are rare - less then 10% of Garou have one, and less than 1% have a Grand Klaive (among septs, which I take it means they exclude any garou who don't belong to septs whether that are Ronin, the Rabble among the Bone Gnawers, or lone Silent Striders among many others don't have them at all)
    • Wyrmslayer (the Gwydion has been dropped) created the first klaive during the late Bronze Age (probably around 1000-800 BC)
    • It's mentioned that Wyrmslayer crafted a silver klaive, contradicting first edition.
    • We're told Wyrmslayer's sept and caern are forgotten. WTF!?! This is major lore for the Garou, and it did not happen that long ago compared to many Garou events! This is something that should be known as popular knowledge to almost every Garou, certainly every Fianna and Silver Fang should know.
    • Klaive means "burden" in the Garou Tongue
    • Every tribe now has the knowledge and means to create klaive although the Silver Fangs are unrivaled masters for nearly 3000 years
    • Kinfolk are the ones who craft almost every klaive as it is too dangerous for Garou
    • We're given something concrete to the flavor text that an attuned klaive creates a bond with its wielder - if the wielder dies there is a chance the spirit bound to the klaive is set freed
    • Klaives are the traditional symbol of leadership among the Garou, and Garou who study klaive dueling also learn the history and legends of these notable legends. (Garou who have the Klaive Dueling secondary ability or as a Melee specialty can roll that + Intelligence to recognize specific klaives and their history)
    • Learning klaivaskar requires a mentor
    • Klaive duels are extremely formal and require a Master of Challenge to adjudicate (not mentioned, but assumed is that a Master of Challenge must know the Rite of Grievance mentioned earlier)
    • Masters of Challenge always stop klaive duels if a participant frenzies, and that Garou always loses the duel. It is acceptable to try to goad your Garou opponent to frenzy.
    So we have some noticeable changes. First, the klaive has become a symbol of leadership and authority, not just a weapon used to settle serious disputes. It is also always silver. No more talk of klaives made of non-silver. Second, the secret of crafting silver klaives now belong to all tribes, not just a Silver Fang secret. Third, kinfolk now make them instead of an elite group of Garou, particularly Silver Fang Philodox. Fourth, we're given some additional flavor text about klaive duels - such duels are part of a specific rite and the Master of Challenge is heavily involved. Lastly, we're given some additional information about who has the most klaives and their overall number among the Garou Nation.

    The major changes are that klaives have become a lot more important, are far fewer in number, but also more widely available since a select group of Silver Fangs no longer have a monopoly in their creation. I think this last part really changes the setting. As a setting where the Silver Fangs alone have the lore and ability to craft silver klaives bolsters their authority (this is important in first edition as the Silver Fangs are clearly losing their status as unchallenged rulers of the Nation, and this is one of the few things they have to whip the other tribes if they too would like new klaives). And instead of this process becoming a lost, dying art, it is now widely known and no longer of being lost. And making KINFOLK the people who can craft silver klaives is very, very lame. I much like the idea of only Garou possessing secret lore able to craft them, but also at the cost of their skin being horribly scarred and burned.

    I actually like the first edition better in that specific regard. But the streamlining of "all klaives are silver" does have some benefit. Though the game now offers examples of non-silver fetish weapons like the Get of Fenris' Ironhammers and Black Furies' Labrys of Isthemene.

    Comment


    • #3
      Revised edition Player's Guide mostly mirrors second edition, but there are some differences.
      • There's no more mention of Wyrmslayer or the Fianna's role in creating klaives.
      • It repeats klaive duels is the method of choice for serious disputes. This is common to all editions.
      • It says that some of the largest caerns may have two klaives kept specifically for duels, but this is rare. This calls into question how Garou can settle serious disputes if so few klaives are out there.
      • Much is made of the symbolic nature of the klaive as a symbol of the burden of leadership. Therefore, unworthy Garou are harassed and challenged a lot to remove it from them. We are saying more importance placed on it as a symbol of authority rather than a deadly means to resolve disputes.
      • We're now told that it is the Fianna, Get of Fenris, and Silver Fangs who possess the most klaives - these three have more than all the other tribes combined. The reason is that these tribes forged them a lot when they warred with the first Black Spiral Dancers.
      • Almost without exception, klaive crafters are kinfolk. Although it is Theurges who attend them and turn them into a fetish. We're a long away from a secret group of Silver Fang Philodoxes who monopolize the creation.
      • We're told that since klaives are so rare, that one way to discourage klaive dueling is to force disputants to try to find one they can use.
      • Few klaive duels do not have at least a few observers from other caerns. This really, really, interests the Garou.
      • Most duels are fought within a 15 meter diameter circle that has six Ahroun (if available) stationed equidistantly around it, with the Master of Challenge in the middle. Once such a duel is started, it will not be interrupted in any circumstance except a full scale invasion of the caern. This is sounding a lot more like a Rite, but no rite of grievance is actually mentioned.
      • Frenzy automatically disqualifies a participant (but so much for a duel to the death), but it is no longer universally acceptable to goad your opponent into doing it. Fianna and Shadow Lords find it acceptable, but Silver Fangs and Get of Fenris do not to the extent that attempt to do so will disqualify the participant!
      • Duels can be to first strike, first blood, or to incapcity/death! So much for the duels to the death of first edition! In fact, we're told official duels to the death are almost unheard of in recent years! The reason we're given, of course, is that the Garou population is too small so this stupid. Of course it is, but it also gave some gravitas to a klaive duel. Only grievances serious enough (to a Garou's Rage maddened eyes) lead to them. Now it seems like a hollow ritual and empty echo of the past.
      • Master of Challenge is mentioned many times, highlighting his importance in this. We're even told that the art of klaivaskar can only be taught by any klaive beaerer who has used his weapon in combat for more than a year and the Master of Challenge. This is an indirect way of saying any sept's Master of Challenge MUST be trained in klaivaskar. That's an interesting idea I'll need to be incorporating in my chronicles.
      So while Revised is very close to the second edition take, there are some notable changes. First, while acknowledged as a means to resolve "serious disputes", a klaive duel has been really defanged. It's no longer really to the death. There's still winners and losers and the potential for great harm, but except in rare circumstances, it's not final. So this means that klaive dueling is now much more likely to happen, but a lot less likely to settle a dispute because both participants live. The only thing that reduces klaive dueling is that it is so hard to find one you can use. Klaive dueling has become a lot less awesome. Second, it seems to be+ a requirement now for the Master of Challenge to be trained in the art of klaive dueling. I like this a lot. Third, that klaives were mass produced to kill Black Spiral Dancers is a neat idea even though it means the Get of Fenris now replaces the Shadow Lords as one of the tribes who have them. Fourth, there's been shift from klaives as an honorable means of death for disputes between Garou to a weapon used mainly to kill the Garou's enemies.

      The only other book I know that prominently discusses klaives is Revised edition's Hammer & Klaive, so I read that too. Whoah, boy. Do we get major changes from that. It's a good example of how edition changes can throw canon out the window.
      • The First Klaive is now made by Wind-howl, a female Silver Fang Galliard, using a Glade-Child spirit during the time when the world was new and was killed about three minutes into her first battle with it.
      • Since the Silver Fangs have a strong tradition of (multiple if need be) Silver Fang descendants trying to rescue lost klaives (from ancestors fallen in battle), this has impressed many spirits who make them more eager to be included in the next Silver Fang klaives.
      And that's about it. Granted, I did not read the book closely. I skimmed it looking for references to klaive and found few. So I might have missed more details. But they really botched the story of the First Klaive, didn't they? Unless you simply want to throw out canon, I think you need to assign the story of Wind-howl as simply a pathetic attempt by the Silver Fangs to appropriate the creation of the first klaive from the Fianna. The story is either completely made up, or somehow represents how the Silver Fangs first learned to make their first klaive, as opposed to Wyrmslayer's First Klaive. Or perhaps the story has some basis in fact (some SF Galliard by that name did make an early fetish weapon), but is completely wrong on many details. I can't even match Wind-howl to the story of the Silverforgers because she's not a Philodox and didn't learn the secrets of silver from Luna. (Which is not surprising since that is probably non-canonical now).
      Last edited by Black Fox; 05-15-2020, 11:56 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        This is a lot of really interesting analysis and while I do agree that having the Silver Fangs be the predominant masters of Silver klaives while other tribes use primarily non-Silver klaives, it does take something away in a sense that a lot of people would be annoyed about being mostly unable to use the cool Silver klaives.

        But, ultimately, my point here that I'm actually writing this to make is that I'm actually pretty forgiving of inconsistency in the klaive origins and even Gwydion's true origins being lost because ultimately, something this epic of proportion would see so much revision and regional drift such as to make it nearly impossible to clear up short of a quest into the tribal homelands to find Gwydion so he can set the record straight.

        (I also find it neat that Gwydion made the first klaive with a falcon spirit because in Changeling the Dreaming, the symbol of House Gwydion is a silver falcon.)

        Comment


        • #5
          One reason that I like the story of Wyrnslayer is that there is a persistent meme in Werewolf that the Fianna did many of the Garou cultural achievements first. They created the Garou Tongue. They were the first tribe to form. They created the first klaive. They were instrumental in the creation of the Litany. They made the alliances with the Fey. They aren't the kings of the Garou Nation, but they certainly contain a lot of its culture heroes.

          I also think that elements included in the original write up gives STs more tools for plot. If everyone can create klaives (albeit by passing the duty onto kinfolk), it just becomes another Background. But a Silver Fang monopoly on creating silver klaives, a special camp of Silver Fang Philodoxes who are the only ones who know the secret, that the art is dying and new silver klaives may go extinct unless new silverforgers are recruited, and the implicit idea that this monopoly is one of the things holding up Silver Fang leadership can be utilized by players and STs in a number of ways.

          If you want a silver klaive and you're not a SF, now there's a story an ST can run. Do you suck up? Do you provide lots of chiminage? Do you challenge for one? Do you steal one? Do you go on a quest for one?

          Or since it's a dying art and the lore isn't being taught anymore, what do you do if your PC wants to learn the secret, especially if you are not a SF? What will you do? Is there a reason why new students are not being lost? Or simply distinguishing a sept by the fact that one of its members know this lore. What impact does this have on your chronicle?

          How do the Silver Fangs use their monopoly to uphold their power? Obviously letting them be borrowed for things (like klaive duels) creates debt. Or giving them away to Garou of other tribes who have demonstrated loyalty to the kings.

          I do like much of the additional information on the details of klaive dueling in later editions, but I like the first edition's emphasis that these are duels to the death and only utilized for the most serious of disputes or personal conflicts.

          I hadn't given much thought to klaives before I did this research. But now I'm thinking of how to use this in my games as I feel there's a lot of story potential. I just need to figure out the right blend of all the editions to use. And I may change some elements - like keep the Silver Forgers, but have some of their members be other tribes (especially the Fianna) who have been sworn not to teach anyone who has not been admitted to their guild (which is controlled by the Silver Fangs). Or perhaps allow every tribe to make klaives, but only Silver Fangs know the secrets to make Grand Klaives (the old Silver Swords).
          Last edited by Black Fox; 04-09-2020, 07:10 PM.

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          • #6
            After considerable thought, I've determined how I'll be presenting Klaives in my chronicles. Before this, I never paid them much attention to kalives, but I'll work to incorporate more of them into my games going forward. This is a synthesis of their depictions throughout all editions, ignoring what I don't like and adding some new things when needed. The earlier editions have precedence for me, but I'll be using the later editions for additional flavor and to fill in some gaps that first edition didn't address. Here are the main points.
            • Klaives have always had silver in them (unlike first edition). It's just too essential.
            • Gwydion Wyrmslayer of the Fianna crafted the original klaives in the late Bronze Age around 3000 years ago. "Gwydion" is based on the legendary Welsh hero Gwydion. This helps give me the actual caern and sept he belong to - Mount Snowdon in Wales (listed in Werewolf: the Dark Ages). It is called Wyrmslayer's Sept in honor of the legendary Fianna, and has been a center of Fianna klaive crafting ever since. The silver for their klaives traditionally come from the Cwmystwyth mines in Ceredigion, Wales, a center of silver mining since the Bronze Age. Note that the human legend of Gwydion includes elements of both the Changeling House Gwydion's founder and Gwydion Wyrmslayer. The Fianna was named after the Fae.
            • Klaives are made by Garou, not kinfolk. Since the breed form does not suffer aggravated damage from silver, there is no reason why kinfolk need to be involved.
            • The art of Klaive crafting is now universally known throughout the Garou Nation, although the master craftsmen of the Nation are considered to be the Fianna and Silver Fangs, followed by the Get of Fenris and Shadow Lords, and then everyone else. Klaives from their provenance are known for their quality and prestige.
            • However, only the Silver Fangs are able to craft Grand Klaives. An elite camp of Silver Fangs known as the Silver Forgers were able to learn the secrets of silver from Luna herself that allowed them to combine multiple spirits (war, silver, and additional ones for additional powers) that allowed for Grand Klaives. Virtually all Grand Klaives belong to the Silver Fangs except for a few that were given as gifts, lost in challenges, or when other tribes recovered those lost in battle. Recover of such Grand Klaives is important to Silver Fang Roaylists.
            • The Silver Forgers are an elite camp of Silver Fang Philodoxes who preserve he secrets gained from Luna thousands of years ago. Their camp entrance requirements are exceedingly high, and very few are accepted leading to the crafting of Grand Klaives as a dying art. Presumably these strict requirements are part of the chiminage requirement to forge such weapons, but since those secrets are only known to the camp, none can truly say. Camp members are often known for their horrible burns and scars indicating they must forge their Grand Klaives in a non-breed form.
            • Possession of a klaive is a traditional sign of authority in the Garou Nation. Most are held by those in the office of Sept Elder or another sept office (particularly the Master of Challenge) with the others being personal possessions. Less than 1 Garou in 10 have a klaive; it is closer to 1 in 20.
            • Many such klaives are not actually used, but are kept for ceremonial use or stored in secret caches "when needed." This creates resentment as many younger Garou want them to available for their own dangerous quests.
            • Klaives are often lent to others for the purposes of dueling, or to fulfill certain quests. This requires others to attune to the fetish, but afterwards the klaive is always expected to be returned. If they are not, that Garou is marked as a criminal and will be punished by the rite of the Voice of the Jackal if not slain outright.
            • Klaive duels among the Garou are almost always to the death. Septs often do their utmost to prevent disputes between Garou getting to this stage, and the Master of Challenge uses various ploys to delay or obstruct them, but when an actual duel is held a Garou will almost certainly be dead.
            • To become a Master of Challenge, it is a virtual requirement in many septs to be a master of Klaivaskar (either possess the Secondary Ability, or specialty in Melee).
            • A klaive duel is very ritualistic, and in fact is its own Rite, a variant of the ancient Rite of Grievance. A Master of Challenge is always the ritemaster. Duels are fought within a 15 meter diameter circle that has six Ahroun (if available) stationed equidistantly around it, with the Master of Challenge in the middle. Once such a duel is started, it will not be interrupted in any circumstance except a full scale invasion of the caern.
            • A participant who Frenzies is disqualified automatically and loses the duel. The Master of Challenge always intervenes in this case. Very often the shame of losing results in the suicide of the duelist, or his falling into harano. In some tribes there is considerable social pressure put on the losing Garou to commit suicide in order to die an honorable death.
            • Standard mechanics for klaives apply. An attuned klaive creates a bond with its wielder - if the wielder dies there is a chance the spirit bound to the klaive is set freed.
            • Garou who study klaive dueling also learn the history and legends of these notable legends. (Garou who have the Klaive Dueling secondary ability or as a Melee specialty can roll that + Intelligence to recognize specific klaives and their history)
            • Learning klaivaskar requires a mentor. Melee can be used when wielding a klaive in combat, but does not count as "knowing" proper klaivaskar.
            So while there is a lot of consistency over the years regarding klaives, there is some inconsistency between editions and sometimes between sourcebooks within an edition. The above is my personal reconciliation.

            Comment


            • #7
              This is really cool Black Fox! I like your overview and how it does its best to weave in all the best elements without leading to contradiction and to help bake in flavor and lore into the setting.

              Comment


              • #8
                Now that I figure out the basics of klaives in my chronicles, that only leaves coming up with a heritage for any individual klaives in my game. There's a chance for some interesting flavor that could enrich player's RP experience and world building. It sets klaives apart from other fetishes, and makes them more interesting to PCs.

                Other than things that might drive chronicle plot, or intended for use in some PC's backstory, I think I'll treat this as an opportunity for player collaboration. I'll ask the players to contribute ideas and figure out a klaive's heritage in several portions (creation/origin elements, identification with any authority roles, and 3-12 noted exploits associated with that specific klaive). I'll then reward them with an XP.

                So I'm currently brainstorming ideas for two klaives I'll be locating in the home sept and a third for player background, but I'll leave every other klaive potentially out there to the ideas of my players.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I am compiling Rites outside the corebook that are available to PCs to learn. As a result, I want to create an actual description of the Rite of Klaivaskar as a modernized version of the Rite of Grievance. I tried to include all relevant information from all editions. I am putting it up here for review and feeback.

                  Rite of Klaivaskar
                  Type: Accord
                  Level Three
                  Klaivaskar is a variant of the ancient Rite of Grievance. Klaivaskar is a ritual klaive duel between two Garou whose conflicts have not been able to be resolved. Traditionally Klaivaskar is fought to the death, but in current times Garou often try to prevent Garou from engaging in the practice. A frequent means is to deny the participants use of klaives as these rare fetishes are rarely possessed and not often loaned out. As a result, Klaivaskar is almost always fought by older, experienced Garou of high Rank with access to klaives, and their duels are frequently attended by observers from other septs. Some tribes seek to reduce the death of Garou by deciding victory in Klaivaskar by first strike or first blood instead of death. This is frowned upon by many Garou who see it as a demeaning of the rite.

                  System: The Rite of Klaivaskar must be overseen by a sept's Master of Challenge who acts as ritemaster. Duels are fought within a 15 meter diameter circle with six Ahroun (if available, but other Garou can be substituted as needed) stationed equidistantly around it, with the Master of Challenge in the middle. Once such a duel is started, it will not be interrupted in any circumstance except a full scale invasion of the caern. A participant who Frenzies is disqualified automatically and loses the duel. The Master of Challenge always intervenes in this case. A successful completion of the rite initiates combat. A failed rite is seen as dishonoring the ritemaster and the two participants. A ritemaster who is viewed as purposefully failing the rite loses five temporary Honor.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hey, I know this might be a little late, but I would like to give my 2 cents here.
                    My most played character in any WoD table so far was a master of klaivaskar, so a researched a lot about it. I liked a lot of your ideas, but have a few points that I think are worth discussing.
                    The first and most important one, is about the SF and they knowing the secret to forge silver from Luna herself. Even though I think it's a cool story, it strikes me wrong in a way. The SF are, at least in mine and my friends vision, one of the (if not THE) least favored tribes by Luna, in virtue of their allegiance to Helios in so many forms (their tribal Totem is aligned with Helios!).
                    That said, this loss of favor could be related to the dying of the art, with every new candidate for the camp needing to find a way to get favor with Luna herself, and their pride and increasing harano making it constantly harder.
                    Going this way, I don't think it's impossible for someone from other tribe discovering this art, albeit that would be really hard, and whomever did that might want secrecy, as not to be hunted and killed by the SF who would like to maintain the secret top themselves. It could even inspire a story, with the pack having to track and find some non-SF forger before he's killed or something like that.
                    In the end, the duels always resulting in death feels a little odd for me. I guess that would depend more on the tribe of the participants. I can see, for example, a SF survivor committing ritual suicide, or a Get killing itself by doing a kind of suicide attack against a enemy (I imagine a Werewolf alone trying to kill as many enemies as possible before dying, as way to restore some honor). But, for example, a SL would be expected to find ways to compensate for his loss in other ways. Be bound in service to the winner for some time, doing work so he can regain face with the tribe, or even working towards what caused the duel in the first place! I think that adding those nuances could increase depth on the world.
                    Feel free to disagree Haha

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Some thoughts:
                      -I think I read somewhere that the blades are an all-silver construction and strengthened through magical means. Really, it'd just be easier to coat a normal weapon with silver (you could make grand klaives easily with such a shortcut)
                      -. There are Gold-Swords used by Mokole if I recall correctly-they'd be even softer were it not for some kind of magical strengthening technique. Mokole aren't really common enough to bother making fetish-weapons for, and Corax are too weak to bother with.
                      -The Get make Klaives because they celebrate their craftsmen more than other tribes and like to compete with their works. However, the Get also have their jarlhammers and other weapons, and they don't celebrate swordsmanship. The shadow lords have more reason to want a Klaive. Fianna craftsmanship isn't as good as the Get, but they celebrate the stories more, and that might make for better spirit integration. The Fianna like other weapons too, but there's a lot of fianna. The Fianna probably outnumber the SF,SL and GoF combined. The Silver fangs are P2W characters so... For numbers of Kliaves, I'd go with SF>Fianna/SL>>GoF. The BF have Labrys (A stupid weapon, but I suppose if you can put more spirits in them it might pay off) and the pure tribes... what are they doing with Klaives again?
                      -The Glass walkers should've made a long list of weapons better than a kliave. Even if we ignore autocannons and bleeding-edge tech, they should have silver sabres or something.
                      -polearms seem like a much better weapon for orthodox Garou. by a longshot.
                      -That there aren't more body-armour fetishes is a monument of Garou stupidity.
                      -Klaives are rare because garou are stupid. Yeah, Klaives exist because Garou are stupid, but that 10% rate has gotta be the Garou sabotaging themselves. They could easily outfit everyone with a Klaive if they actually tried to get production going. Silver is not so expensive, and it doesn't rust, and apparently magic strengthens the blade so... You'd think after generations upon generations upon generations of garou, with an apparently declining population*, they'd have some for everyone. (were they just declining relative to the human population?)


                      Throw me/White wolf some money with Quietus: Drug Lord, Poison King
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                      • #12
                        You don't mass produce Fetishes. They are items of story and legend with a sentient being who has either agreed or been forced inside. You deal with such things with the utmost respect, and if they are treated poorly you cause dysfunction, dishonor and sanction. Coupled with the whole thing that having a weapon made for killing other werewolves and the cultural baggage of Klaive Culture and it's no wonder that they are rare.


                        What doesn't kill you, makes you... stranger.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Ulbrecht View Post
                          The first and most important one, is about the SF and they knowing the secret to forge silver from Luna herself. Even though I think it's a cool story, it strikes me wrong in a way. The SF are, at least in mine and my friends vision, one of the (if not THE) least favored tribes by Luna, in virtue of their allegiance to Helios in so many forms (their tribal Totem is aligned with Helios!).
                          I think that's a perfectly fine approach in an individual chronicle. Although the entire point of the two Lodges are to balance the Silver Fangs' favor with both Celestines. I don't think the story about the Silver Forgers was ever repeated after the first edition Players Guide so it's likely immaterial to most chronicles.

                          Originally posted by Ulbrecht View Post
                          That said, this loss of favor could be related to the dying of the art, with every new candidate for the camp needing to find a way to get favor with Luna herself, and their pride and increasing harano making it constantly harder.

                          Going this way, I don't think it's impossible for someone from other tribe discovering this art, albeit that would be really hard, and whomever did that might want secrecy, as not to be hunted and killed by the SF who would like to maintain the secret top themselves. It could even inspire a story, with the pack having to track and find some non-SF forger before he's killed or something like that.
                          I do think the idea of klaives (or even just the grand klaives in my scenario) being limited to the Silver Fangs, AND the idea that the secret is becoming lost, do lead to some interesting options for STs. It gives them tools both at the local level (I want this fetish - do I kiss the SF king's ass, or challenge him?; I try to join this group) and at the setting level (the last Silver Forger dies - so now what; a plot to steal the secret; a quest to be taught the secret independently) to generate plot for PCs. It makes for a more interesting setting. Every ST will figure out what kind of balance between the number of the fetish, who possesses them, who makes them, and how difficult it is to make that fits their chronicle.

                          Originally posted by Ulbrecht View Post
                          In the end, the duels always resulting in death feels a little odd for me. I guess that would depend more on the tribe of the participants.
                          Tribal identity and sept culture certainly play a role. However, I think things like duels to the death seem alien to our modern mindset, but were quite common in previous ages. Notions of one's honor being violated motivated a lot of deadly fights. I think this is one area where many players need to adopt a pre-modern mindset for most Garou, or at least the ST for the NPCs. The Garou Nation overall is still a pre-modern people. It's OK for the usual suspects (BGs, GWs, and CoGs) to not be like the others.

                          I see klaives as not being the first result for such things. Septs won't allow Cliaths or even Fostern to use them for duels. Many disputes are going to be resolved once Garou mature and time moves on. And lesser challenges will resolve most issues. But I think long standing feuds and conflicts climax to the point that both participants see fit that it is time to finally end them even if it means the death of one of them. So it has a role of ending ongoing disputes that are never resolved so local Garou can move on. It can make a good climax to a chronicle or chapter; be used as a sudden change in the chronicle; or jumpstart a new story. So I think it's a good element in the setting for STs. They just need to go about it intelligently.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                            I think I read somewhere that the blades are an all-silver construction and strengthened through magical means. Really, it'd just be easier to coat a normal weapon with silver (you could make grand klaives easily with such a shortcut)
                            That such a soft metal can be used as a weapon has to be a result of the spirit side of the fetish, not the metal itself. Probably one of the "secrets" of the crafters learn.

                            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                            -The Glass walkers should've made a long list of weapons better than a klaive. Even if we ignore autocannons and bleeding-edge tech, they should have silver sabres or something.
                            The cultural importance of klaives is probably more important than their use as actual weapon, so tradition is important. Modern weapons would be much more devastating, but would have no symbolic value. Plus, I personally think the idea that military grade weapons in common use would quickly break the Veil and imperil the Garou. Plus more silver = less Gnosis. So there is a cost. Also the easier and more dangerous you make it to use, allows an unskilled person to control and use it against the Garou. An unskilled, bitter kinfolk is not very dangerous if they have a klaive. He's more dangerous if he has a gun with silver bullets. He's extremely dangerous if he's down in his basement remote controlling a drone with an auto-cannon shooting silver rounds. PENTEX is much more likely to have something like that, but likely refrains to avoid questions from the media or government if they ever used it.

                            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                            -Klaives are rare because garou are stupid. Yeah, Klaives exist because Garou are stupid, but that 10% rate has gotta be the Garou sabotaging themselves. They could easily outfit everyone with a Klaive if they actually tried to get production going. Silver is not so expensive, and it doesn't rust, and apparently magic strengthens the blade so... You'd think after generations upon generations upon generations of garou, with an apparently declining population*, they'd have some for everyone. (were they just declining relative to the human population?)
                            Outside of the Black Spiral Dancers and other Fera, klaives don't offer much additional advantage from other combat fetishes like Fang Daggers.

                            As for their rarity, we have two likely explanations in the setting. The first is that the chiminage and skill required to produce is high, so few craftsman possess the skill or desire to do so. Also, klaives are prone to self-destruction. I believe all editions state that when an attuned wielder dies, there's a chance the klaive's spirit leaves - effectively destroying the fetish. And of course if Garou fall in battle, not only do they lose the klaive but their enemy might decide to destroy them, or they get destroyed during use. Just like real life swords become unusable or broken, so can klaives.

                            Most RPGs quickly break down when they allow crafting because rare items suddenly become more omnipresent. This is because RPGs aren't any kind of economic simulator. They just provide quick and easy rules to allow GMs and Players do things in the moment. Good GMs find ways to make sure magic items and the like don't become more common than they are supposed to regardless of the actual mechanics. In Werewolf, this is probably the case of appropriately high chiminage that most Garou would not want to meet.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Asmodai View Post
                              You don't mass produce Fetishes.
                              I didn't mean that literally. But let's say your sept works at a relaxed pace of making one Klaive a year... you're going to have a lot of klaives.

                              In response to other stuff
                              - "the secret being lost" is a cliche that I don't feel works particularly well, especially in context of werewolves who are still extant and haven't changed all that much and have plenty of rivalries and reasons to compete.
                              -Even the short reach advantage a klaive has over claws should present a monumental advantage in a fight against other Garou. Mechanically, that isn't well represented, but IRL, a master with a dagger is going to have a hard matchup against a noob with a sword, and such would be true for Claws VS Klaives (admitedly, the skill gap between garou is potentially greater, but that's not worth going into)
                              -I meant to say the glass walkers could make better melee alternatives to Klaives. The 'cultural importance' of weapons is, well, important, and I guess the Labrys is a good example of a stupid weapon design being elevated because it makes a nice house for a spirit, but good weapon design is good weapon design. Most pictures I've seen of Klaives have presented us with very badly designed weapons, even if we assume the artist is taking liberties with the scale (which is oft in text at odds with the pictures)


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