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Okay, so let's read this thing [Hurt Locker]

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  • When I think of cults, I either think of ancient, secretive mystery cults or, more likely, the Pierre's modern scams that grind up and abuse the emotionally vulnerable. I'll leave it at that


    A god is just a monster you kneel to. - ArcaneArts, Quoting "Fall of Gods"

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    • Out of Curiosity now, after rereading your read through of CHP. 2. What kinds of styles do you think would be welcome in the game? I know this book is all about the violence but for the purpose's of this question I'm broadening the question to more than just the violence. Like, would you want a social combat fighting style?

      Just trying to get ideas.

      (Now that i've said it I can't get the idea of a cooking style merit out of my brain )



      Frequent Story Teller for the Circle of Five gaming group.

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      • I don't really understand why people think of social maneuvering as combat. Anyways, putting that aside...

        We currently have three Social Maneuvering styles - Fast Talking, Etiquette, and the currently-changeling-only-but-easy-to-convert Enchanting Performance. There's also the Pusher, Sympathetic, Empath and similar merits, which tie into the system well which create additional "style merits" but not formal styles.

        Now, I'd like to group Fast Talking and Pusher together as a kind of "Con" style tag. Its all about subterfuge, persuasion, bribes and appealing to one's vice.

        Next, we have Sympathetic and Empath. I'm tying these two together because they both key off maneuvering people through use of Empathy. You understand their pain and can relate to them better. You even take penalties to yourself (share the pain) so that you can get closer to them, and directly remove doors. There's no formal style for this, but they both key off the same idea, and it wouldn't be bad to make a full Style based off this.

        Air of Menance stands alone for a moment - there's no Maneuvering Style that focuses on Forcing Doors or hard leverage, really. Or, for a more general approach, one that relies on Intimidation and other implied threats. Forcing doors is pretty simplistic, so there's not a lot of room, I suppose, but I'm sure something could be done. Could even play up being intimidating on one hand, then soften up in a kind of duality that confuses people and makes them readily agree to things due to confusion, or something along those lines

        Etiquette is all about specializing in using Socialize. I would also include Fame, Taste and Barfly as related style tags, since those are all about blending in and having weight with specific crowds. Yes, even though Taste uses Expression and Crafts, it more relies on discussion of a specific group's interests than being more inspiring, like below.

        Enchanting Performance. Technically this Style is changeling only, but its easy to convert (just swap glamour for willpower). Its like a better version of the Inspiring merit for using Expression in various ways. There's not a lot that really ties into this kind of style other than being really good at Expression. I'd like to see more inspiring style merits that do more than give out Inspired, maybe tie in some persuasion for "Firebranding" or Cahalith style rousing.

        Table Turner and Closed book deserve some mention. A kind of style that turns social maneuvering back on someone for being really good at not being tricked or convinced about something.

        You can leverage social merits like Allies, Contacts and Status to get things done. There should be Styles that reflect using your Fame or Status or whatever appropriately. Something like a "Police" or other athoritarian vibe. "I'm in charge, you listen to me," style. Or "I know things about you" type thing. Doesn't even need to be related to social maneuvering, but can mess around with other social merits and what they can leverage or produce. Or something about double-teaming with a Mentor or Retainer in social situtations. Honestly, I feel like this is a subsystem worthy of its own set of supporting abilities and expansion, just like Chase is now a second physical-based subsystem, just like Crafts.

        More animal-based styles of any type would be awesome. Social, combat, whatever. Animal Ken is... interesting. Its main use of rolling to training, cowing, soothing animals can really be acomplished with just one dot, same with most animal ken based magic abilities, and then just buff with specialties as necessary; much cheaper and effective that way, and often doesn't come up. Here's where animal ken shines in 2e, however. It adds to your Bonded animals' rolls. So, animal trainers that have Retainers, or perhaps Familiars / personal totems / hedgebeast companions / animal ghouls / etc can use these pets to great effect with pretty significantly large dice pools and can shrug off magic powers better than their trainers. Still, though, this is just a glorified "Retainer" style system like I mentioned above. At best, we can just say that we have a Style for improving the Bonded Condition. Making it apply to more diec rolls, more bonuses, having the bonus work in reverse, etc. Not exaclty social-focused, but can be used in social situations, so still relevant.

        At this point, we've basically covered every social skill having its own associated styles. The only one lacking at this point is Streetwise, which, to be honest, I think is more of a Mental merit than Social anyways. Hells, the write up even says its about "knowlege of life on the streets. It tells her how to navigate the city, how to get information from unlikely sources, and where she’ll be (relatively) safe." Its all about knowing the right things or people. My games treat it as the "low" version of Politics - crime versus legal, I suppose, and I would tie these two skills into that social merit thing I discussed above.

        Outside of linking to specific skills, I can imagine that we would have an interrogation style (police interviews, etc) for information gathering. Interrogations have Intimidate as their main skill, so perhaps that can link into Air of Menace like I talked above? The Avoidance FS, while technically a combat based merit, actually does provide a kind of good idea based on that first dot - appearing like a wallflower or similar so you can use stealth and subterfuge to be unimportant while doing other things. There could be other avenues based on that same idea. Blend in, don't pay attention to the man behind the curtain. Good for infiltration type things.

        That's all I got.
        Last edited by MCN; 03-28-2017, 05:40 AM.

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        • While we're on the subject of Chapter 2 and the various Styles there.... perhaps someone can answer a question for me about the Avoidance FS? Whack-a-mole. How does one use Manipulation + Persuasion to Arm Wreck someone? Let alone as a reflexive counter attack? Seriously, I'm drawing a complete blank here. How does this work from a story perspective?

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          • I think it's supposed to represent confusing and/or annoying the attacker to distracting levels and making them hurt themselves trying to hit you. Persuasion... probably isn't the best skill choice to help represent that, though.
            Last edited by Sconce; 03-28-2017, 08:21 AM.


            Have a bit of a bad habit of extensively editing posts after, well, posting them. Bear with me...

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            • I think that the perquisites make sense for the most part, it is mentioned that you don't necessarily need these merits to perform these maneuvers so I take the merits as meaning you have the training and physical acumen to do these maneuvers reliably. I have had gruff with the strength requirements on firearms before but that's mostly focused on their definition of a heavy and light pistol. I usually don't have problems with making a good fighter at chargen, but then I'm also well known in my social circles for my ability to min-max and abuse a system to it's fullest extent.

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              • Like, over extending themselves, or something? Oh, thus the name. Try to hit a wack-a-mole that dodges out of the way and you hurt yourself swinging down too hard, I guess?

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                • Originally posted by MCN View Post
                  Like, over extending themselves, or something? Oh, thus the name. Try to hit a wack-a-mole that dodges out of the way and you hurt yourself swinging down too hard, I guess?
                  It actually is possible to hurt yourself from improperly reading distance. Usually you end up hurting an ankle or a foot or your hand though and not really something that would take you out of a fight, except for that one time a guy broke his pinkie toe on the mat when fighting me in a tournament but that was more of a fluke.

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                  • Yeah, I understand it as dodging to provoke an over extension. Somebody trying to punch you hits the concrete wall you were standing in front of, or somebody swinging an axe wrenches their shoulder with the momentum when it doesn't stop where they expected it to. Manipulation + Persuasion is sort of a strange pool to do that with, but I see what they were trying to convey.

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                    • Yeah, I would have put that as Dexterity + Subterfuge, along the lines of Cheap Shot or whatever the Street feinting merit is called. But to each their own. I'm working on making Coattails really pop through use of Parkour.

                      And, yeah, its possible to hurt yourself, its just a very odd thing, and I'm not sure it feels right still. Feels janky.

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                      • No, I haven't given up on this yet. I had to study for the SATs, then write the SATs (I did well, by the way), then I got distracted by homebrew writing. Will try to get to this book again this week.


                        Ekorren's Homebrew Hub - Last Update: July 10, 2017

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                        • Okay, after many distractions for some time now, I'm back and will keep reading this book.


                          CHAPTER THREE: THE OTHER SIDE

                          This chapter has a lot of Supernatural Merits. I'll read them all but I may not comment on them all. There's an info box that suggests that you need to be a human to learn Supernatural Merits to avoid unnecessary complexity.

                          I do have a few favorites immediately. I can see myself using Assertive Implement and Bless Amulet among others for a shaman type character. I picture something like a story set in the mountains of Nepal with a ghost hunter using the bound ghosts of his ancestors. Or maybe it's tied to some voodoo shenanigans. Either way, I like when you can build an entire character around something as seemingly simple as a Merit.

                          Camera Obscura: Fatal Frame!!!

                          Consecrate Weapon + Assertive Implement = Even cooler character.

                          Dark Passenger: This is just creepy. I thought it would be a reference to Jeff Lindsay's Dexter series.

                          Evil Eye: This seems powerful for two dots. Though I'm not sure what the Insensate Tilt does so I may be wrong.

                          Fated Ferocity: This was interesting. Very badass fighting style too. I like it a lot.

                          Hidden Variable: I may want to use this for a later Vampire character in my game. Would something break if I let a Vampire have this?

                          Pyschokinetic Combat: There are so many psychokinetic Merits in this game that I wonder how it'd be like to face someone with all of them. I probably wouldn't allow a PC to have these Merits for any type of game I'm interested in Storytelling, but I will definitely use these tools for NPCs.


                          SUPERNATURAL MERIT TEMPLATES

                          This part of the chapter presents character templates that let you play supernatural characters that are somewhere in between humans and supernatural splats. The Merit Supernatural Resistance helps make the character comparable to other characters that may be other splats. I wish these templates had been in the corebook, to be honest. If I would be designing a revised corebook, I'd probably keep most of the God-Machine Chronicle separate and instead add a bunch of content from Hurt Locker.

                          Atariya: Introduces the Damn Lucky Merit that's a super powerful defensive Merit that lets you ignore damage based on your Merit rating. The Merit Mr. Lucky works kind of like a guardian angel. This one was really interesting to me. You could play campaigns based around the mysterious Mr. Lucky. The Merit Nine Lives keeps you from dying, and the Merit Count Down lets the character know all the times she's escaped death. There are more Merits as well, all very interesting and thematic to the template. Though it says that you must be an Atariya to learn them, I suppose you could technically borrow here and there for a character without having to follow the template as written. Mr. Lucky in particular is something I could see myself using for other characters.

                          The Infected: When I was generating characters together with my players, one of them expressed interest in wanting to play a character who was suffering from an untreatable form of cancer. I wasn't aware of this template at the time and I shrugged it off as something that could be addressed in game without actually needing any specific Merits for it. Now in hindsight, that character concept could have worked well as an Infected.

                          The Plain: Umm ... okay.

                          The Lost Boys: This was really cool. I could see myself making a game based on these guys.

                          Psychic Vampires: Right. They are cool and all, but I'm pretty sure we've got some real vampires annoyed by their name choice. I know the book doesn't want me to do this, but I wonder if it would be fun to play a psychic vampire vampire. Are there such a thing as liches in the Chronicles of Darkness? I kind of want to call these guys liches instead.


                          I started off with a short post now because I don't have time to read anymore at the moment. I'll try to get the post about the Tokyo chapter in as soon as possible. I'm determined to finish this book soon so that I can get started with Vampire. I'm going to need that one soon.


                          Ekorren's Homebrew Hub - Last Update: July 10, 2017

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                          • Re: Liches - the term is used in Mage to refer to Mages who use (usually unscrupulous) magic to live forever. That said, as you continue to read CofD books, you'll find that there is a lot of terminology overlap. There are at least three different things called demons, for example, and potentially a lot more depending on how you count.


                            Onyx Path Forum Moderator
                            My mod voice is red. I use it so you know when I'm speaking in an official capacity, not as an indication of tone.

                            Gowing by Willow now, or Wil for short. She/Her/Hers.

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                            • Heh. Goetic demons actually got renamed to Goetia to reduce the number of types of demons. Now we only have infernal, supernal and unchained demons, that I know of.


                              Bloodline: The Stygians

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                              • Originally posted by Tessie View Post
                                Heh. Goetic demons actually got renamed to Goetia to reduce the number of types of demons. Now we only have infernal, supernal and unchained demons, that I know of.
                                That's why I say depending on how you count. Strix have been called demons before too, and the Lucifuge are descended from demons that may or may not be any of the ones we're familiar with, but I don't count either.

                                2e has cleaned this up in some ways (see goetic demon changing to goetia), and made it worse in others (don't get me started on "Reach/Reaching").


                                Onyx Path Forum Moderator
                                My mod voice is red. I use it so you know when I'm speaking in an official capacity, not as an indication of tone.

                                Gowing by Willow now, or Wil for short. She/Her/Hers.

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