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  • After the 6th Great Maelstrom

    So we may get answers when Wraith 20 comes out...eventually, but I am curious as to what you all would do for a post 6th Great Maelstrom setting. One option is to follow the game lines and say that the Shadowlands, Stygia, and rest of the Tempest is wracked by the Maelstrom constantly, but would you do anything different from the post Reckoning metaplot or Ends of Empire?

    Personally, my inclination is to have a powerful Maelstrom that never abates but that is somewhat less omnipresent: it vascilates between locking the tempest down in horrific storms and encasing the entirety of the Shadowlands in the soul storm (I.e., the storm is just as tough but is either in the Shadowlands or in the tempest, not both, and alternates often). Also, I think I'd leave Stygia in tact but say that it and the other Dark Kingsoms are under constant attack, including from powerful Once-Borns.

    Your thoughts and ideas?

  • #2
    Wr20's pre-6th Great Maelstrom, from what's been dropped about it


    Scion 2E: What We Know - A wiki compiling info on second edition Scion.

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    • #3
      Yeah I have it the Maelstrom was hellish for a good while. But only the initial storm was apocalyptic, a few years after and the Maelstrom waxed and waned but Empires could rebuild, and a decade and a half after, the empires are getting off their feet but they are more guarded as regular maelstroms are just a fact of Death now, and demonic specter hordes are more rambunctious then a hundred years ago.


      It is a time for great deeds!

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      • #4
        So a lot like they are handling the Avatar Storm in Mage 20th if you want to choose Option A - It did happen and Option 4 - It still matters?

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        • #5
          Back in the early to mid 00s there was a fan group that tried to continue on the Wraith line post cancellation. This included writing guildbooks and settings and updating things for a post 6th Maelstrom underworld. I believe it was called the Wraith Project.

          Their view (if I'm remembering it correctly) was that Stygia was largely fallen and the Necropoli were under regular but inconstant sieges. That's one of the three ways I'd handle a post 6th Maelstrom story.

          The second is my interpretation of the Orpheus setting: the 6GM scoured the underworld clean and became the Stormwall. In Orpheus it sometimes seems like the Stormwall is the Shroud itself and ghosts no longer 'cross over' but are instead stuck incorporeally in the Skinlands, but in a Wraith setting, I'd put it between the Shadowlands and the former Tempest (now Wasteland).

          The third way is to follow the pattern of previous Maelstoms and have the storm settle into a large scale war for the survival of the Dark Kingdom of Iron. Key battles for strategic points like Byways and Necropoli. Surprise tactics caused by new features of the Tempest, that sort of thing.


          Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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          • #6
            That is awesome. Did you like Orpheus as s successor to Wraith? Also, is the Wraith Project still active?

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            • #7
              I don't think the Wraith Project is still being updated, but the site is still active. You can find it at http://www.cattail.nu/wraithproject/main.html

              As for Orpheus I love it, it is probably one of my favorite stories and settings from White Wolf. I don't know about great successor to Wraith, though. While it is ostensibly a continuation of the same setting, there are some major differences in theme. For instance Wraith is a game about letting go or dwindling away, Orpheus is a game about holding on and living. So while the two are broadly similar on the surface, when you dig into them you can see deep metaphysical differences that interfere with any attempts to merge the two games. That said, I don't see any problem with looting the obvious aftereffects of the 6th Great Maelstrom.


              Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Ramnesis View Post
                I don't think the Wraith Project is still being updated, but the site is still active. You can find it at http://www.cattail.nu/wraithproject/main.html

                As for Orpheus I love it, it is probably one of my favorite stories and settings from White Wolf. I don't know about great successor to Wraith, though. While it is ostensibly a continuation of the same setting, there are some major differences in theme. For instance Wraith is a game about letting go or dwindling away, Orpheus is a game about holding on and living. So while the two are broadly similar on the surface, when you dig into them you can see deep metaphysical differences that interfere with any attempts to merge the two games. That said, I don't see any problem with looting the obvious aftereffects of the 6th Great Maelstrom.


                That makes sense. I wonder: do you think the One World of Darkness should take a note from Orpheus and try and shift [Wraith] in that direction given the notorious reputation Wraith has for being "the best game no one will play"?

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                • #9
                  Not really. Orpheus isn't an improved form of Wraith or Wraith with the rough edges smoothed over, it is a completely different game. The changes in design reflect a much deeper change in direction and focus. For all that they have similar settings they don't play very well together and I can't see any way of bringing in the more accessible parts of Orpheus without deeply damaging the entire zeitgeist of Wraith.

                  As it is, the option to bring the Orpheus Group in as a potential storyline element in Wr20 seems largely pointless to me. The group itself can be a fun element in a Wraith game, of course, but the rest of the story and focus do not fit.


                  Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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                  • #10
                    Any elements that would be worthwhile to import? Like the threat of Grandma? In fact, that could be a way to reconcile the 6th Great Maelstrom - they forces of Oblivion should have destroyed all of the Shadowlands and Dark Kingdoms, but Grandma has awoken and caused more chaos than expected

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Ramnesis View Post
                      Not really. Orpheus isn't an improved form of Wraith or Wraith with the rough edges smoothed over, it is a completely different game. The changes in design reflect a much deeper change in direction and focus. For all that they have similar settings they don't play very well together and I can't see any way of bringing in the more accessible parts of Orpheus without deeply damaging the entire zeitgeist of Wraith.

                      As it is, the option to bring the Orpheus Group in as a potential storyline element in Wr20 seems largely pointless to me. The group itself can be a fun element in a Wraith game, of course, but the rest of the story and focus do not fit.
                      Though there was something actually there for Drones in Orpheus. A lot more than in Wraith. In fact, the Drone-analogues were pretty much the point of the game until PLOT HAPPENS.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Ajax View Post

                        Though there was something actually there for Drones in Orpheus. A lot more than in Wraith. In fact, the Drone-analogues were pretty much the point of the game until PLOT HAPPENS.
                        Very true, that was a welcome change. It also intertwined the process of waking drones and helping them move on. Transferring that to Wraith means making Transcendence dramatically easier. That undercuts the threat of Oblivion and invalidates major chunks of the setting history.

                        If we dump the idea that waking Drones brings them closer to Transcendence (and the idea that aiding Transcendence removes Angst/Spite) we can probably take the rest, though. It still undercuts the entire justification for the forges, but it's entirely possible that was Hierarchy propaganda anyways.

                        Originally posted by Trategos_Sol View Post
                        Any elements that would be worthwhile to import? Like the threat of Grandma? In fact, that could be a way to reconcile the 6th Great Maelstrom - they forces of Oblivion should have destroyed all of the Shadowlands and Dark Kingdoms, but Grandma has awoken and caused more chaos than expected
                        It depends on what you take. Grandmother works fine as an exceptionally powerful Neverborn. Anything more than that and she starts to clash. As an existential threat and font of alien life Grandma is a strange (though not completely unprecedented) fit. As the personification/replacement/denizen of Oblivion itself, Grandmaw is a complete revision of Wraith's metaphysics.


                        Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Ramnesis View Post

                          Very true, that was a welcome change. It also intertwined the process of waking drones and helping them move on. Transferring that to Wraith means making Transcendence dramatically easier. That undercuts the threat of Oblivion and invalidates major chunks of the setting history.

                          If we dump the idea that waking Drones brings them closer to Transcendence (and the idea that aiding Transcendence removes Angst/Spite) we can probably take the rest, though. It still undercuts the entire justification for the forges, but it's entirely possible that was Hierarchy propaganda anyways.
                          Perhaps it's easier to usher Drones to Transcendence than Wraiths? All that Psyche and/or Psyche/Shadow and/or Willpower gets in the way....

                          Which would change the dynamics of the Shadowlands, but it might do so in interestingly. For example, it does give the Heretics something tangible to hold on to and something (for some of them to do). First off, now wraiths have a much, much better idea that Transcendence is real. (In that it's still hard to get a Drone to do it based on Orpheus, but it's possible. So it's less of a Mythology of Transcendence than an Urban Legend of Transcendence.) Also, some Heretic cults could be ushering Drones to Transcendence as a path to getting there themselves. Others could consider them a waste of time; it's the Transcendence of wraiths that matters, not some pulling drones who couldn't keep it together. (Also, maybe the Far Isles thing becomes a location, location, location, thing. Transcendence is easier there for whatever reason floats your particular Heretic boat.).

                          And the Hierarchy could still be soulforging the hell out of them. It's a crueler, darker Hierarchy, but they're not, essentially, wrong. Drones could still easily succumb to their Shadows in greater numbers and with greater frequency than they can be saved. Something has to be done with them and soulforging works. Yes, some that could achieve Transcendence won't, but many many more are never going to become Specters (probably Shades.... <shudder>) And this expediency has become entrenched at the core of the Stygian economy. At this point, not forging Drones will destroy their civilization. Which will lead to even MORE wraiths falling to their Shadows....

                          Oh, and lest I leave out the Renegades... They have another something to be mad at the Hierarchy about. Something legitimate and awful.

                          And, since the not-Guilds are becoming a bigger thing.... Various guilds would be all over the place. Artificers and Masquers probably all in with the Hierarchy path. Conflicted Pardoners? (I (Though they could/would definitely have some part that might be the most sympathetic to the Heretics). Many that don't have any position at all.


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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Ajax View Post

                            Perhaps it's easier to usher Drones to Transcendence than Wraiths? All that Psyche and/or Psyche/Shadow and/or Willpower gets in the way....
                            That would be one way of handling it. In Orpheus, though, raising a drone almost all the way to Transcendence was a reliable way of making fully aware Spirits, and was a reasonable origin for player characters. So there it was actually the same process. And the complete journey happened often enough to be a key way of combating Spite; raising a Drone all the way to Transcendence automatically removed a full dot of the stuff for everyone involved.

                            Now if raising Drones to full sentience without Transcendence were possible that might create the changes to the Shadowlands you described. Even more so if you could raise them to Transcendence without sentience, as that would counter most of the moral and functional arguments for Soul Forging.


                            Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Ramnesis View Post

                              That would be one way of handling it. In Orpheus, though, raising a drone almost all the way to Transcendence was a reliable way of making fully aware Spirits, and was a reasonable origin for player characters. So there it was actually the same process. And the complete journey happened often enough to be a key way of combating Spite; raising a Drone all the way to Transcendence automatically removed a full dot of the stuff for everyone involved.

                              Now if raising Drones to full sentience without Transcendence were possible that might create the changes to the Shadowlands you described. Even more so if you could raise them to Transcendence without sentience, as that would counter most of the moral and functional arguments for Soul Forging.
                              I was taking it more along the lines of being able to raise them to Transcedence without bringing them to full wraithly sentience. Sure, the epiphany might result in the blip/drone gaining full sentience right in that split second before Transcending.

                              But having the ability to raise them to become full-on wraiths would be interesting too.

                              But if it's less likely to get a drone to Transcend or to uplift it to full sentience than that it will fall to its Shadow and become a Specter, then there is always going to be an expediency argument for soulforging. Plus, well, soulsteel is so useful.

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