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Klaives through the Editions

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  • #16
    Sounds like we have different assumptions about the setting.

    The only time "secrets are being lost" would come into play is if someone decides to use that element of the Silver Forgers which is only found in first edition Players Guide. It's never mentioned again to my knowledge. I did not even know about it myself until I began doing archaeology for my study on klaives. I imagine this thread is the greatest exposure of this idea it has had in the past thirty years. So most chronicles don't have it at all. I think the idea has some merit, but I'm only using it for grand klaives as opposed to klaives in general. And if you want justification, it's easily invented as some kind of chiminage requirement that de facto limits the people who can learn how to do it. Each ST would decide precisely how restrictive that is.

    A klaive is just a dagger. Artists like to go overboard sometimes. Larger klaives would be a different fetish - the grand klaive (also known as a silver sword). Most of the lager klaives in art are probably best said to represent grand klaives (though were probably intended to be just klaives since grand klaives are supposed to be incredibly rare). But even here, a lot of the art will look ridiculous (or "cool" depending on your taste) as opposed to "realistic".

    In my chronicles, I wouldn't ever see the same person in the same sept crafting the same fetish over or over again every year. Or even continually crafting fetishes at all. Garou do not have specialized economy or employment. If someone makes one, it is because they need one themselves or because they are willing to help out someone they like in exchange for some chiminage. They're not someone whose "job" requires them to keep producing them. There could be a particularly skilled craftsman whose prestige is so great, that the greatest Garou seek him out to make a klaive for them, and this person would make far more klaives than others. But even this person probably wants to do other things than just make klaives or keep paying the chiminage costs to spirits to do so. Such Garou craftsman have their own Renown to earn, their own Rank challenges to overcome, their own goals to achieve, not to mention ordinary life. Constant klaive making for others will get in their way. Same thing for any other fetish - there won't be someone making a Magpie's Swag every year.

    Plus, let's assume a sept somehow manages to make it work and produces a klaive every year. I think this will provoke a response from other Garou. Why are they making so many klaives? You don't need them to kill fomori. Other fetish weapons would work just as well or even better. They're only utilitarian purpose is to kill other Garou or Fera. Does this sept intend to go to war with other septs? Take over their caerns? Start a new War of Rage? What is going on? Far from being something Garou would want a lot of, I think Garou leadership would want them limited and easily controlled for the same reason people want gun laws. About the only legitimate reason would be to prepare for a major offensive against the Black Spiral Dancers, and that would probably require a fairly large concolation to organize it, determine leadership, etc. It's not something that would be left to one sept - if for no other reason to make sure their fingers are involved in making that pie. Most likely to make sure that it's not a pretext to do something else. And they'll probably discuss what is going to happen to all these klaives afterwards - it's dangerous for so many to be around, and what happens if something goes wrong and the Dancers end up with a lot of these klaives to use against the Garou? So I think there would be social pressure to explain and probably limit such things.

    But I think the major reason we don't see many klaives (or any other fetish) is that the actual chiminage to make them is high so the cost of making many is prohibitive. The mechanics of fetish making is fairly simple. But they don't exist in order to simulate an actual fetish economy or preserve the setting. They are there just to provide a quick means for STs and PCs to go about fetish making so it doesn't bog down the game. It's why in online games with many members, the STs tend to add a lot more burden to making fetishes - they don't want the crafting economy to get out of hand. So this is an area where every ST will make their own determination of what fits.

    It's OK to run a setting where fetish making is much more common, but you'll likely get a very different setting than what is published. And other STs will have different assumptions for their chronicles. I don't see the relatively few numbers of klaives as stupid or something that needs much explanation.


    • #17
      whats your opinion on the rarity of bane/wyrm Klaives then?

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      • #18
        Good question. I had not given it any thought. And unlike the material published about klaives, I think the only info we get is the fetish description itself. So we're left to extrapolate a lot on our own. I had to quickly look it up in my old copy of second edition's Book of the Wyrm where it says this is a version of the Grand Klaive. So we might assume Dancers don't create versions of klaives, only grand klaives because that's what available to them due to the spirits they can deal with. Though they probably have a certain number of Garou created klaives they won in battle. But if an ST ruled differently, I wouldn't say they were wrong to do so.

        The setting doesn't imply that the Dancers have a greater or lesser access to baneklaives than the general Garou population does with grand klaives. While I would imagine they have an even greater desire to use them as the Garou outnumber them, this has to be compensated by things that would restrict their creation or use. The most obvious restrictions would be 1) the chiminage needed to do so must be even greater, and 2) the Dancers being more prone to violence within their own ranks, whoever knows that skill personally restricts it so that it improves their relative advantage within the tribe.

        I prefer the Dancers to have their own unique fetishes, not direct counterparts of Garou fetishes. That creates more of a sense the Dancers deal with very different spirits. So I like the idea baneklaives are more rare respectively than Garou grand klaives. If I wanted a weapon that could hurt Garou as much as a klaive for the Dancers, I'd look for something with a very different style. I'd leave the baneklaive to be left for the "final boss" of the Dancers in any chronicle. But that's just personal taste.

        Those are just initial thoughts. I am open to change if I hear of scenarios that I feel would improve the setting or potential plots for PCs.