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What We Know So Far: Deviant the Renegades

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  • Satchel: Lore-Hound, indeed. Nicely done.

    Rapid Healing is one of the Variations that is always both Persistent and Perpetual. Others in that category are various effects of Anomalous Biology that do things like make you ageless, or not need to eat, drink, or sleep. Because the activation of a Variation lasts until the end of the current scene (with only a couple exceptions), and it would be silly to stop aging, or needing to eat/drink/sleep for the duration of a scene.

    When you move beyond those weird Perpetual-mandatory Variations, most Variations are Toggled. And Toggled Variations can, as described above, be made Perpetual by entangling them with the Relentless Variation Scar (details available during the Kickstarter). However, the reverse is not true because of the parameters I use to determine whether a Variation should be Perpetual: If the Variation is Subtle, carries no cost, and there is literally no reason you wouldn't want to have it on all the time (armor, invulnerabilities, special senses, etc.), I make it Perpetual. Granted, it's only "always on" if you entangle it with a Persistent Scar, so if it's Controlled (or Involuntary), you have to use an action to "turn it on" (again, there's more to it than this, which you'll see during the Kickstarter).

    Why make the distinction? First, it clears away potential arguments at the table over which of your Persistent Variations are "always-on" and which ones you need to take a moment to activate. If your Persistent Variation is Perpetual, it's always active. If it's Toggled, you have to activate it during the scene in which you intend to benefit from it.

    Second, in many cases, Relentless Variation still allows you to temporarily "turn off" a Variation it has made Perpetual - kind of like a Controlled Variation in reverse. Instead of spending Willpower (or whatever) to activate the Variation, you spend Willpower to suppress its effects temporarily, for example, or instead of your secret weakness preventing you from activating your Variation (the Power Failure Scar, which is Controlled), you have some circumstance that temporarily suppresses your always-on Variation (Cyclops' glasses are an example of this functionality). Relentless Variation only works on Variations with the Toggled keyword, however, because it's completely busted if you can use it on Variations no one would ever "pay" to turn off. For example, if you have undetectable armor (Carapace Variation), how often would you spend a point of Willpower (Tribulation Scar) to turn it off? Practically never.

    I won't pretend that we can address every possible clever way of combining Variations and Scars that could get out of hand, and I largely trust players not to be complete power gamers looking for ways to abuse loopholes in the system. But like my father always said about locking the car doors when you're out in public, some things exist to keep honest people honest. And that's what the Perpetual keyword is, in this context. Fewer rules discussions at the table (however friendly they might be) means more time available to tell your stories.

    As usual, way more detail than anyone really wanted, I'm sure!


    Onyx Path Freelancer and Fantasy Author

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    • Originally posted by Eric Zawadzki View Post
      I can't entirely eliminate the disappointment of the Kickstarter not starting this week (as I know many here had hoped), but perhaps a sneak peek at a few Scars will take away a little bit of the sting: http://theonyxpath.com/a-collection-...the-renegades/

      ETA: Ninja'd.
      I just wanted to say that I really love the design notes that accompany the Scars and Variations that have been previewed. They give me a sense for how this game is actually going to look, and it also makes it plain to see why you chose those particular examples to show off, and I always like those kind of "behind the scenes" things, whether in games or movies. I am glad that the Scars look as well thought out and interesting as the Variations, too, since those are so important and in another game I could see them being a bunch of negative modifiers to rolls. I'm really looking forward to the Kickstarter!

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      • Minty: I'm glad to hear it. The inherent contradiction in being an extroverted writer is that I want to spend countless hours working on creative projects, but I also want to spend countless hours talking about what I'm working on. It is no exaggeration to say that your enthusiasm for this game (and that of your fellow forumites) only feeds my enthusiasm to work on it. In the same vein, I'm hoping we blast through a kerjillion stretch goals just so I have an excuse to come up with more Deviant-related writing projects to propose as stretch goals!

        To some extent, I think Scars are more important to Deviant than Variations. The text spends a lot of time telling you that you're Broken and that you want revenge on these conspiracies because of what they did to you. The cracked soul has some pretty nasty effects in itself, but the Scars are the most visible and personal burden the Remade bear. This is especially true of Persistent Scars, which can really f' you up, but it isn't untrue of Involuntary or Controlled Scars. In the case of Controlled Scars, in particular, this is partially a matter of emphasis. In other CofD games, you have to make an activation roll of some kind and possibly tap into an arcane fuel source to use your occult abilities, but Deviant plays this up as an additional layer of the horror that is being Broken. You have unique capabilities that are not wholly reliable or that occasionally manifest at unwelcome moments and in unpleasant ways. Further, the system incentivizes playing up your Scars (even minor Scars) with Beats, which hopefully gets a nice feedback loop going so that Scars are never something that disappear into the background.

        Do you get the sense that probably no one is more ready for this Kickstarter to begin than I am? Because I'm pretty sure that's the case. *smirk*


        Onyx Path Freelancer and Fantasy Author

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        • Conviction and Loyalty.


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

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          • So despite going another week with no Deviant KS, another blog post is up!

            This time covering Deviant's Anchors, Loyalty and Conviction

            http://theonyxpath.com/conviction-an...the-renegades/

            EDIT: Ninja'd

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            • Originally posted by marin View Post

              This is what we in the business call "possibly replacing other Touchstones in Leliel's other gamelines from bones alone." It's that awesome. Also love the heel heat system suggested with Conspiracies harassing Loyalty Touchstones.

              Also, Feral Deviants. What're they like?


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              • Originally posted by Leliel View Post


                This is what we in the business call "possibly replacing other Touchstones in Leliel's other gamelines from bones alone." It's that awesome. Also love the heel heat system suggested with Conspiracies harassing Loyalty Touchstones.

                Also, Feral Deviants. What're they like?
                Either a rabid animal or the terminator

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                • Eric Zawadzki Thank you for the Loyalty and Conviction blog post! http://theonyxpath.com/conviction-an...the-renegades/

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                  • And according to yesterday's Monday Meeting Blog, Deviant the Renegades Art is IN and APPROVED! Kickstarter graphics are being put together as we speak! Crossing fingers and wishing on stars for a possible next week KS announcement.

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                    • Now I'm wondering what Conviction and Loyalty actually do, as numbered traits. They seem to only be rolled to affirm or maintain themselves, but I suppose they might be part of dice pools to resist Instability, too?

                      When a character acts against a Wavering Touchstone, he rolls his current trait as above, but on a failed roll, the Touchstone is lost, in addition to the dot.
                      I have to assume the intended meaning is "instead of" rather than "in addition to," since the associated dot is already gone.

                      I do like the look of these rules overall. When I read that Vice, Virtue, and Integrity were getting rolled into one, I expected a more involved system, but this is clean and functional. I guess they do make it a bit harder to do travelling games, but that can be resolved by houseruling in more abstract/general Touchstones, or by just making sure the PCs' Touchstones are spread out across the setting.
                      Last edited by The MG; 09-11-2019, 11:58 AM.

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                      • the touchstones sound great! cant wait to blame the game (and wont lie. the way it works reminds me of dark souls. you have to have a purpose, or you'll go hollow/feral)

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by The MG View Post
                          I have to assume the intended meaning is "instead of" rather than "in addition to," since the associated dot is already gone.
                          Acting counter to a Touchstone and failing the relevant Anchor roll loses you one dot of the Trait and makes the Touchstone you acted counter to Wavering; acting counter to a Wavering Touchstone and failing the relevant Anchor roll loses you one dot of the Trait and loses you the Touchstone you acted counter to.


                          Resident Lore-Hound
                          Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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                          • So many questions. That's awesome!

                            Originally posted by Leliel View Post
                            This is what we in the business call "possibly replacing other Touchstones in Leliel's other gamelines from bones alone." It's that awesome. Also love the heel heat system suggested with Conspiracies harassing Loyalty Touchstones.

                            Also, Feral Deviants. What're they like?
                            I'm excited that you're excited. :-D

                            Ferals are a wretched, paranoid lot. They have fewer vectors for gaining Instability (since they lack Touchstones and can't forge bonds with new ones), but they have virtually no way to manage any Instability they get, so they're on a path to eventual Instability death from which they can only move forward. They don't derive any benefit from wrecking the conspiracies, but conspiracies are still interested in *them*, for various reasons. This incentivizes steering clear of humanity entirely, which their lack of Loyalty Touchstones doesn't curb as it does Renegades and Devoted. They don't get a huge amount of attention in the core, but we'll do a lot more with them in an eventual Storytellers Guide.


                            Originally posted by Robert D View Post
                            And according to yesterday's Monday Meeting Blog, Deviant the Renegades Art is IN and APPROVED! Kickstarter graphics are being put together as we speak! Crossing fingers and wishing on stars for a possible next week KS announcement.
                            Here's hoping!

                            Originally posted by The MG View Post
                            Now I'm wondering what Conviction and Loyalty actually do, as numbered traits. They seem to only be rolled to affirm or maintain themselves, but I suppose they might be part of dice pools to resist Instability, too?

                            I have to assume the intended meaning is "instead of" rather than "in addition to," since the associated dot is already gone.

                            I do like the look of these rules overall. When I read that Vice, Virtue, and Integrity were getting rolled into one, I expected a more involved system, but this is clean and functional. I guess they do make it a bit harder to do travelling games, but that can be resolved by houseruling in more abstract/general Touchstones, or by just making sure the PCs' Touchstones are spread out across the setting.
                            Touchstones are the main way Deviants clear Instability, so they're essential in that regard. Touchstones receive a bonus/penalty to social rolls against the Deviant, which is derived from the Loyalty/Conviction rating. All Deviants also have an Adaptation called "Stubborn Resolve," which allows them to give themselves a bonus to attempts to force them to act against the drives of Conviction/Loyalty, and that bonus is also based on the Conviction/Loyalty rating. Conviction rating vs. Loyalty rating also determines whether the Deviant becomes a Guardian (if Renegade) or Nemesis (if Devoted).

                            As far as the contradictory language you point out goes, that was updated in post-approval development (all these blog entries were submitted back in July) to read:

                            "Failure: The character partially closes himself off to his commitment to the Touchstone. The Touchstone becomes Wavering, reducing his Loyalty or Conviction trait by one. If the Touchstone was already Wavering, he loses it entirely and cannot reestablish a connection to the same Touchstone during the current chapter. In addition, the character suffers a minor Instability."

                            This will be reflected in the manuscript preview during the Kickstarter.

                            How travel-friendly a chronicle is will depend in large part on the specifics of your Touchstones. Many conspiracies are far-flung, so it's perfectly reasonable to have to chase a Conviction Touchstone (or an abducted Loyalty Touchstone) across the county/nation/continent/world.

                            Originally posted by Primordial newcomer View Post
                            the touchstones sound great! cant wait to blame the game (and wont lie. the way it works reminds me of dark souls. you have to have a purpose, or you'll go hollow/feral)
                            I'm not familiar with that specific work, but that sounds about right - as long as that purpose is destroying the lives of those you hate and protecting those you care about.


                            Onyx Path Freelancer and Fantasy Author

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                            • Originally posted by Eric Zawadzki View Post
                              Touchstones are the main way Deviants clear Instability, so they're essential in that regard. Touchstones receive a bonus/penalty to social rolls against the Deviant, which is derived from the Loyalty/Conviction rating. All Deviants also have an Adaptation called "Stubborn Resolve," which allows them to give themselves a bonus to attempts to force them to act against the drives of Conviction/Loyalty, and that bonus is also based on the Conviction/Loyalty rating. Conviction rating vs. Loyalty rating also determines whether the Deviant becomes a Guardian (if Renegade) or Nemesis (if Devoted).
                              Ah. yes, it makes sense that this information wouldn't be in the Conviction/Loyalty rules.

                              As far as the contradictory language you point out goes, that was updated in post-approval development (all these blog entries were submitted back in July) to read:

                              "Failure: The character partially closes himself off to his commitment to the Touchstone. The Touchstone becomes Wavering, reducing his Loyalty or Conviction trait by one. If the Touchstone was already Wavering, he loses it entirely and cannot reestablish a connection to the same Touchstone during the current chapter. In addition, the character suffers a minor Instability."

                              This will be reflected in the manuscript preview during the Kickstarter.
                              I figured it was something like that. Though, just for clarification: do you take a minor Instability every time you fail a Faltering roll, or only when you lose a wavering Touchstone?

                              I have another question, too, but first I'll say this: I really like what I've seen of Deviant so far. I haven't followed the leadup to an OPP product this closely sincer EX3, and I very much look forward to seeing the finished product.

                              With that said...
                              How are Scars assigned during chargen? Given how entanglement works, it sounds like different characters in the same game could end up with very different Scars, both in number and severity. Obviously the book will have guidelines, but I'm curious if there's anything you can say about it ahead of time.

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                              • It works out to a minor Instability on Success or Failure whenever you Falter, no Instability on an Exceptional Success, and a medium Instability on a Dramatic Failure.

                                Characters receive total Magnitude of Variations based on the chronicle's threat level, ranging from 2 to 15 (plus 1 Scar-free Magnitude of Variation based on Origin). Players choose enough Scars to entangle all the starting Variations. Yes, it is quite possible (especially in a high-threat level game) for some characters to start with a few high-Magnitude Scars, while others start with several low-Magnitude Scars. And there are some advantages and disadvantages to both of these strategies. High-Magnitude Scars are largely attractive because high-Magnitude Variations are attractive, but high-Magnitude Scars are also a pretty serious hassle, with multiple high-Magnitude Scars becoming difficult to manage.

                                In practice, playtesters seemed to mostly pick Variations that supported their character concept, and then chose Scars to "pay" for those powers. In a couple cases, a player started with a particularly appropriate Scar, and then found Variations to entangle with it. The experience might be different in a longer-run game, but for the most part, I want to see quite a variety of Scars within a cohort.


                                Onyx Path Freelancer and Fantasy Author

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