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  • #16
    Okay, I think I'm getting it...

    Wow, that can be a real mindbender. So, in actuality, that would make any Skinlands building that has a Shadowlands predecessor, so to speak, very hard to navigate.

    To make sure I have this right (continuing with the LV example) the Bellagio is built where the Dunes used to be. A wraith could walk across the casino floor or through the hotel hallways of the Dunes without encountering any issues, but if they attempted to walk across the Bellagio's casino floor, they may run into a wall that existed in the Dunes and be impeded?

    I apologize for all the questions and being dense about this, but I just want to get straight how I'm going to describe stuff like this to my players because, for a game that will have a good amount of action on the Las Vegas Strip, I think it's going to come up a lot.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by MarquisMark View Post
      Okay, I think I'm getting it...

      Wow, that can be a real mindbender. So, in actuality, that would make any Skinlands building that has a Shadowlands predecessor, so to speak, very hard to navigate.

      To make sure I have this right (continuing with the LV example) the Bellagio is built where the Dunes used to be. A wraith could walk across the casino floor or through the hotel hallways of the Dunes without encountering any issues, but if they attempted to walk across the Bellagio's casino floor, they may run into a wall that existed in the Dunes and be impeded?

      I apologize for all the questions and being dense about this, but I just want to get straight how I'm going to describe stuff like this to my players because, for a game that will have a good amount of action on the Las Vegas Strip, I think it's going to come up a lot.
      It's one way of doing it, yeah.

      For me personally, I do think it's a bit too much of a hassle to have the PCs navigate a maze of Shadowland and Skinland buildings. Especially considering one bad move could lead to them going Incorporeal...and taking one Bashing damage. It's not a lot at first, yeah, but it adds up over time. And you run the risk of making taking damage trivial to your players.

      And it would get tedious to turn the act of entering a building a navigation puzzle.

      In my games, I have it that the buildings that exists in whatever realm the Wraith is in takes precedence over the one in the opposite realm. So in your example, if the wraith is in the Shadowlands, it's the Dunes that's there. If they shift to the Skinlands, it's the Bellagio.

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      • #18
        Skakanaka explained it well. In 1st or 2nd edition, they explained the whole "material and relic structures lumped together" by discussing the White House, which in real life was partially destroyed during the Civil War and rebuilt. In Shadowlands, assuming the relic (IE, destroyed) portions weren't hauled away by wraiths to retrofit some ghostly structure nearby, the old, burned portions of the White House are still there, jumbled together with the Skinlands reflection of the current White House. Wraiths can pass Incorporeally through the current portions because they exist in the Skinlands (although they appear decayed and decrepit due to the visual effects of Deathsight); they cannot pass through the relic structures, which exist wholly in the Shadowlands as hard objects. Considering how often the White House was modified for security, expansion, and convenience, there were probably several demolished areas within and around it that at one point persisted as relics, making traveling through that building as ghosts a bit of a maze unless opportunistic ghosts carried away the valuable relicstuff.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by tasti man LH View Post

          For me personally, I do think it's a bit too much of a hassle to have the PCs navigate a maze of Shadowland and Skinland buildings.
          Agreed. I think it's a nice touch now and then to remind players of the reality of interposed relic and material structures by having them navigate through a couple inconvenient areas, but in general I assume wraiths IMMEDIATELY descend on MOST newly destroyed buildings and start chipping away, carrying off the memory-matter to use in and around citadels. This also makes their traveling easier, as a secondary effect.

          I mean, unless some house burned down in the middle of deep suburbia, far from the citadel (depending on your in-game location), clever and enterprising wraiths are going to learn about the windfall of relic building material and use it, so there probably aren't tons of jumbled mazes sitting around. Relic is just too valuable.

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          • #20
            In 1st or 2nd edition, they explained the whole "material and relic structures lumped together" by discussing the White House, which in real life was partially destroyed during the Civil War and rebuilt.In Shadowlands,...
            Is it possible that they changed or altered the metaphysics some in Wraith 20? Only asking that because I can't remember the 20th core rules going over that particular aspect of the metaphysics, but then again, it's possible I missed it or don't remember it. If I'm wrong about that, please let me know.

            In my games, I have it that the buildings that exists in whatever realm the Wraith is in takes precedence over the one in the opposite realm. So in your example, if the wraith is in the Shadowlands, it's the Dunes that's there. If they shift to the Skinlands, it's the Bellagio.
            I am probably going to go with tasti man LH's approach to it, at least in the beginning, because otherwise I think it's going to be too confusing for me to Storytell and not lose the players. Once they are more comfortable with the way things work, perhaps we can make the Shadow/Skinlands overlap a bit more complicated.

            Agreed. I think it's a nice touch now and then to remind players of the reality of interposed relic and material structures by having them navigate through a couple inconvenient areas, but in general I assume wraiths IMMEDIATELY descend on MOST newly destroyed buildings and start chipping away, carrying off the memory-matter to use in and around citadels. This also makes their traveling easier, as a secondary effect.

            I mean, unless some house burned down in the middle of deep suburbia, far from the citadel (depending on your in-game location), clever and enterprising wraiths are going to learn about the windfall of relic building material and use it, so there probably aren't tons of jumbled mazes sitting around. Relic is just too valuable.
            This brings up a good point, and one that I hadn't thought all the way through yet. All the Vegas casinos and hotels that were imploded in the 80's and 90's to make way for the current mega-resorts and are now relics in the Shadowlands, those have most likely been looted and emptied of anything useful long ago. They are probably going to be no more than an empty shell of a building and all loose material inside, like gaming tables and lounge furniture, would be used in the Citadel somewhere. I assume that wraiths are not able to completely disassemble a building of such size, but they can knock out interior walls and columns with relic/soulsteel tools, probably leading to some floor cave-ins as load-bearing structures get repurposed.

            Which can provide a lot of places to squat, hide, or arrange clandestine meetings. I plan on having one or two of the Guilds hold court in the old hotels, the ones that are not able to operate in the open as freely.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by MarquisMark View Post

              Is it possible that they changed or altered the metaphysics some in Wraith 20? Only asking that because I can't remember the 20th core rules going over that particular aspect of the metaphysics, but then again, it's possible I missed it or don't remember it. If I'm wrong about that, please let me know.
              I don't believe they changed the metaphysics, but now that you mention it, I've been combing through Wr20 and cannot find a place where they spell out the implications of relic structures cluttering up the Shadowlands. It is certainly implied by the info on relics, the description of Stygia itself (the city, not the empire), and by some material in Book of Oblivion (20 edition supplement). But You may be right that they don't really lay out the realities of relic buildings and land navigation. I'd be curious if someone can find a place they explains that clearly for newer players.


              Last edited by Callishka; 03-22-2020, 04:02 PM.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Callishka View Post
                Skakanaka explained it well. In 1st or 2nd edition, they explained the whole "material and relic structures lumped together" by discussing the White House, which in real life was partially destroyed during the Civil War and rebuilt.
                War of 1812. The British torched the Executive Residence, which only scorched the outside, but required the interior to be rebuilt. A fourth story attic was added in the 1920s. The West Wing was added in 1901, and the East Wing in 1942. In 1949, the entire Executive Residence interior had to be reconstructed so the building wouldn't collapse. The wooden frame was replaced with a steel one, the main staircase was moved, central AC was added, and two additional subbasements were dug, including a bomb shelter. The modern press room was put in during Nixon and replaced FDR's private indoor swimming pool. In 2010, a massive underground addition was made to the West Wing. It may be debatable just how much of the structure became a relic over time , but the Wings probably aren't.

                (This episode of needless petantry has been brought you by the letter insomnia and the number history nerd.)
                Last edited by No One of Consequence; 03-23-2020, 03:24 AM.


                What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly. That is the first law of nature.
                Voltaire, "Tolerance" (1764)

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by No One of Consequence View Post
                  War of 1812.
                  If I had stopped to think for only a moment, I would have realized this obvious error--lmfao. I can only be pedantic about Wraith metaphysics or history separately, not at the same time xD xD

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                  • #24
                    I've honestly always been a little disappointed that Wraith never had a book devoted specifically to looking at how a Necropolis functions, where and how the Hierarchy and other factions construct their strongholds/citadels, who the actual governing authorities are and how they are chosen, who enforces the law and how, how the wraith economy works including black markets, social scenes and entertainment, and how PCs fit into all of this. This would obviously include discussion of what sort of buildings and materials should pass over into the Shadowlands as relics and the like, as well as what the Hierarchy does when it ends up with an entire building or a place that generates huge amounts of Pathos.


                    What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly. That is the first law of nature.
                    Voltaire, "Tolerance" (1764)

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by No One of Consequence View Post
                      I've honestly always been a little disappointed that Wraith never had a book devoted specifically to looking at how a Necropolis functions
                      Agreed. The closest I found (if memory serves) was a fan-created document called "Book of Dread Cities" found originally here ( http://www.cattail.nu/wraithproject/...Parchives.html ). Unfortunately the link now breaks, but I have the document saved on my hard drive. I've uploaded it here: http://proxemics.net/wraith/bodeadcities.DOC

                      When I was less certain of Necropoli as a setting, that document helped me envision the things you mentioned. It's been a while since I've looked through it, so it could be I'm misremembering what it covers, but it's a good read either way.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by No One of Consequence View Post
                        I've honestly always been a little disappointed that Wraith never had a book devoted specifically to looking at how a Necropolis functions, where and how the Hierarchy and other factions construct their strongholds/citadels, who the actual governing authorities are and how they are chosen, who enforces the law and how, how the wraith economy works including black markets, social scenes and entertainment, and how PCs fit into all of this. This would obviously include discussion of what sort of buildings and materials should pass over into the Shadowlands as relics and the like, as well as what the Hierarchy does when it ends up with an entire building or a place that generates huge amounts of Pathos.
                        Yeah. You have no idea how disappointed I was when the old Hierarchy book barely went into anything like the above...>,>

                        Hell, despite how much the fiction rams in how important the Dictum Mortuum is on maintaining the Hierarchy's power, there isn't really anything to explain HOW they enforce it. It's not like you can just assume they do it the same way how the Camarilla enforces the Traditions or how the Technocracy keeps an eye out for Reality Deviants to be equally applicable here since...well...game's mostly set in an Otherworld, and said Otherworld is very resource scarce to the point you can't assume they manufacture surveillance Artifacts en masse.

                        Although like with Changeling, I suspect this is mostly just indicative of Wraith being a cancelled gameline and not getting a Revised edition to flesh everything out.
                        Last edited by tasti man LH; 03-23-2020, 08:30 PM.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by tasti man LH View Post
                          Although like with Changeling, I suspect this is mostly just indicative of Wraith being a cancelled gameline and not getting a Revised edition to flesh everything out.
                          Wraith: The Great War tried to address a few of these things. I'm hoping W20 gets the chance to do more.

                          In my more perfect world, Wraith's initial year of releases, right after the core book, ST secrets/screen, New Orleans signature city setting book, and a book of antagonists, would have been Ghost Towns, talking about a lot of the above. Year two, right after a guide to the Shadowlands/underworld, would've been the Haunters' Handbook, talking about interacting with the living, especially from a player perspective. Eventually also Marshals: Law of the Dead (how this stuff gets enforced and by whom), Ghosts in the Machine (Wraith technology and science), Lost Highways (travel and some commerce), and Dance Halls of the Dead (entertainment). And a book about Relics.


                          What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly. That is the first law of nature.
                          Voltaire, "Tolerance" (1764)

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by MarquisMark View Post

                            Okay, this here what I was getting a bit tripped up on.

                            How I've understood so far, is that: a wraith in the Shadowlands, when looking around, just sees the relic buildings in the Shadowlands--decayed reflections of what was once in the Skinlands. But the wraith would have to actively peer across the Shroud to see what is happening in the Skinlands (and all the buildings/structures would have that Deathsight patina of decay). Manipulating objects or people in the Skinlands require the use of Arcanoi; passing through the walls or doors would require losing a Corpus and becoming insubstantial. Am I close to the mark on this one?

                            I plan on setting my chronicle in/around the Las Vegas Necropolis. As an example, The Las Vegas Strip, ever-chaning and evolving, would have a nearly full Shadowlands counterpart, populated by relic buildings of the varying hotels and resorts that have been torn down over the years. Each one of these would have more than enough emotional charge to become a Shadowlands structure. Now if a wraith is walking down the Shadowlands Strip, does he see both the Shadowlands and the current Skinlands Strip concurrently, all lumped together?
                            most destroyed things don’t leave relics. It takes strong emotional resonance for that. Cities would wide open spaces with only certain scattered buildings if only relic buildings were visible. More importantly wraiths would be constantly bumping into invisible walls or losing corpus as they’re struck by invisible cars, etc, if they couldn’t see the substances of the Skinlands they have to go incorporeal to pass through.


                            Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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                            • #29
                              I guess the question is how one defines 'strong emotional resonance.' I think many of the Vegas resorts would have the emotional resonance to become relics. They are career workplaces for 3000+ people, who have met spouses there, made friends, raised families together. Not to mention the visitors: the just-turned-21 trips, bachelor/ette parties, weddings, honeymoons, fortunes won and (more importantly) fortunes lost. Then there are some more dubious milestones, the drug benders, first time with a sex worker, which can be the catalyst for broken marriages and divorce, losing one's kids, etc. What they might lack in the intensity of emotional resonance, they will surely make up for in volume.

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