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  • Dark Eras 2 Backer Release

    So, I have already received my copy and took a quick skim after reading the Introduction chapter, very nicely done. I think the art is a bit sparse but I can see an effort was made to get the book into a reasonable size at about 460 pages given the 13 chapters. So for those of you who have read some of it, what do you think, does it live up to your expectation? not quite? or does it blow you away?


    How can I know if what I claim I know to be true is rejecting the idea that there is something I might not know? How can I know if what I claim I don't know to be true is rejecting the idea that there is something I do know?
    -Zhuangzi

  • #2
    I haven't read the entire 460 pages but it's a lot better than I had hoped. The first one had some eras that were more clearly misses, at least to me, this one manages to avoid that. There's also more of a clear idea of what's going on, with each chapter being mostly set up the same (talking about the period, sections for each gameline, then more specific crossover information and inspirations).

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    • #3
      Alright, I henceforth declare it canon the Company of the Codex was the model used for the charter government of the Council of Free Assemblies. Because I'd be tickled pink to taunt Seers with the fact that they managed to crush everything about them except the ideals they so feared. Besides, there's an entirely plausible explanation for how the Picaroons escaped to form the fifth point of the Pentacle - literally nobody in the Diamond liked the Compact of Iron and Silver, and I can see some thearchs conveniently losing the records of the pasts of some "lost solitaires from the colonies" they found.

      EDIT: Also, who wants to play a game where the players are Begotten pirates who board and claim the Red Orchid and use it to hunt down the very slavers it once supplied?
      Last edited by Leliel; 01-14-2020, 09:21 PM.


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      • #4
        I might just be too tired to read, but it seems to me that most of the Merits in The Scandinavian Witch Trials don't actually have enough description for me to understand what their dot ratings represent. Do they look strange to anyone else?

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        • #5
          Kinda like they left out the actual mechanics of the merit.

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          • #6
            Two out of four (Holy Acquaintances and Sabbath Knowledge) are all fluff and no rules at all. One of the other two (Immediate Disappearance) kinda says what it does, but not what the varying dot rating actually does. I also think the last Merit (Invisible Sybaris) is pretty bad because the first dot protects plants and wildlife from something which only affects humans while the third dot makes Sybaris completely optional for the mummy.

            I'm also not a fan of how Scandinavian Witch Trials lumps all of Scandinavia together, completely ignoring the distribution of witch trials between different nations. Denmark killed between two to three times as many people in witch trials than Sweden despite having a much smaller population. Sweden was one of the least affected (but still affected) countries during the whole movement in western Europe.


            Another weird thing is Crochan (the Bloodline Discipline for the Bron in Arthur's Britannia). It reads like a 1e Discipline, with both rolled powers having effects based on number of successes despite that being something 2e tries to do away with, and two examples of Vitae/turn following the 1e Blood Potency chart instead of the 2e chart.


            Edit: "If the sacrilegist’s Humanity is higher than the dot rating of the Sacrilege she commits, she suffers a breaking point with dice equal to the ritual’s rating."
            I'm pretty sure this isn't how it's intended. This would make the most basic rituals breaking points at Humanity 2 and the most advanced breaking points at Humanity 6. Also, why have dice pools based on the ritual's rating instead of using the base dice per Humanity level like all other breaking points?
            (This is about the ritual Discipline Therion on page 344. I also have other thoughts about Therion but no time to express them now.)
            Last edited by Tessie; 01-15-2020, 07:07 PM.


            Bloodline: The Stygians
            Ordo Dracul Mysteries: Mystery of Smoke, Revised Mystery of Živa
            Mage The Awakening: Spell Quick Reference (single page and landscape for computer screens)

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Tessie View Post
              Two out of four (Holy Acquaintances and Sabbath Knowledge) are all fluff and no rules at all. One of the other two (Immediate Disappearance) kinda says what it does, but not what the varying dot rating actually does. I also think the last Merit (Invisible Sybaris) is pretty bad because the first dot protects plants and wildlife from something which only affects humans while the third dot makes Sybaris completely optional for the mummy.

              I'm also not a fan of how Scandinavian Witch Trials lumps all of Scandinavia together, completely ignoring the distribution of witch trials between different nations. Denmark killed between two to three times as many people in witch trials than Sweden despite having a much smaller population. Sweden was one of the least affected (but still affected) countries during the whole movement in western Europe.


              Another weird thing is Crochan (the Bloodline Discipline for the Bron in Arthur's Britannia). It reads like a 1e Discipline, with both rolled powers having effects based on number of successes despite that being something 2e tries to do away with, and two examples of Vitae/turn following the 1e Blood Potency chart instead of the 2e chart.


              Edit: "If the sacrilegist’s Humanity is higher than the dot rating of the Sacrilege she commits, she suffers a breaking point with dice equal to the ritual’s rating."
              I'm pretty sure this isn't how it's intended. This would make the most basic rituals breaking points at Humanity 2 and the most advanced breaking points at Humanity 6. Also, why have dice pools based on the ritual's rating instead of using the base dice per Humanity level like all other breaking points?
              (This is about the ritual Discipline Therion on page 344. I also have other thoughts about Therion but no time to express them now.)

              I was the kickstarter backer who proposed the era and i like what was written for the most part....I do think the sami people were kinda....ignored

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Caedus View Post
                I was the kickstarter backer who proposed the era and i like what was written for the most part....I do think the sami people were kinda....ignored
                That's a huge and glaring omission considering how they were specifically targeted in northern Norway and Sweden. The whole "Hell lies in the North" thing in the introduction was actively applied to the Sami people who were accused to be a people of magicians, and anti-Sami prejudice played a huge part in the witch hunts in and around Vardø (which is one of the example locations).
                (Also, "Vardøya Island"? It's never referred to as such and it makes no sense because Vardøya already means "the Vard/Varg Island".)

                Edit: For the sake of disclosure: I'm Swedish with a Faroese/Danish partner, and I have an interest in our history. This may make me biased even though I try to look at history from a non-biased perspective.
                Last edited by Tessie; 01-16-2020, 07:04 PM.


                Bloodline: The Stygians
                Ordo Dracul Mysteries: Mystery of Smoke, Revised Mystery of Živa
                Mage The Awakening: Spell Quick Reference (single page and landscape for computer screens)

                Comment


                • #9
                  I haven't finished it yet, but how is this so good. I felt that some of the eras in the previous two books didn't really provide enough information on various factors nor spur you to do your own research, but this one does it in spades right from the first page.


                  How can I know if what I claim I know to be true is rejecting the idea that there is something I might not know? How can I know if what I claim I don't know to be true is rejecting the idea that there is something I do know?
                  -Zhuangzi

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Some of this photomanipulation art is... dubious. Lots of goofy screaming dude faces.

                    All the Mummy stuff in the Hawara era hits it out of the park. I love how evocative all the text is.


                    Remi. she/her. game designer.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Ostarion View Post
                      I haven't finished it yet, but how is this so good. I felt that some of the eras in the previous two books didn't really provide enough information on various factors nor spur you to do your own research, but this one does it in spades right from the first page.

                      There are some I really like. and some I don't. though that is more about my personal taste in history. Also I think some of the splats fit better in other timelines then some of the ones they got. The French Revolution chapter is my favorite with plenty of really good fluff and some nice new rules that I think they are gonna have to clean up a little. The golden age of Sci-fi I wish they extended the time period to at least the 60s soe you could fit some different types of sci-fi in there.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Tessie View Post

                        That's a huge and glaring omission considering how they were specifically targeted in northern Norway and Sweden. The whole "Hell lies in the North" thing in the introduction was actively applied to the Sami people who were accused to be a people of magicians, and anti-Sami prejudice played a huge part in the witch hunts in and around Vardø (which is one of the example locations).
                        (Also, "Vardøya Island"? It's never referred to as such and it makes no sense because Vardøya already means "the Vard/Varg Island".)

                        Edit: For the sake of disclosure: I'm Swedish with a Faroese/Danish partner, and I have an interest in our history. This may make me biased even though I try to look at history from a non-biased perspective.
                        YUP i mentioned the sami people in my pitch about it. There is also a place in vardø called Vardøya...but the englishu trend of calling things island island or waterfall waterfall continues.

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                        • #13
                          I think the Sci-Fi thing is lacking something more substantial, maybe expanding the Nazi element in Project Gladiator or something to give more drive for the Nazi-punching or some big bad that was more of an individual target. The Crimson Horror is an interesting hook, but would be so easy to deal with. And the first thing I thought of when reading the Duke of Light was 'is this just the Sparkblood Seneschal from the core renamed?' which it isn't, but they're both Rank 4 electrical spirits with a side focus (Duke is light, Seneschal is information). Also after the big introduction about bigotry and racism the sidebar of 'Can a werewolf write sci-fi? Probably not, but humans or wolf-blooded could easily handle the writing' seemed a bit dissonant. The mechanical adds to Deviant are good though.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by nofather View Post
                            I think the Sci-Fi thing is lacking something more substantial, maybe expanding the Nazi element in Project Gladiator or something to give more drive for the Nazi-punching or some big bad that was more of an individual target. The Crimson Horror is an interesting hook, but would be so easy to deal with. And the first thing I thought of when reading the Duke of Light was 'is this just the Sparkblood Seneschal from the core renamed?' which it isn't, but they're both Rank 4 electrical spirits with a side focus (Duke is light, Seneschal is information). Also after the big introduction about bigotry and racism the sidebar of 'Can a werewolf write sci-fi? Probably not, but humans or wolf-blooded could easily handle the writing' seemed a bit dissonant. The mechanical adds to Deviant are good though.
                            My problem is nazi punching has been done to death. I don't mind doing it but at this point its just become "oh look another game where I fight nazis, haven't done this before..." it feels like this is less about Sci-fi and its writers and more of excuse to have something set during WWII without it being directly set during WWII and with all that entails. But I think if they expanded the time frame to the 60s you could see how Sci-fi kinda evolved from the serials and magazines to books and how american post war culture influenced sci-fi throughout the different time periods with MK Ultra and the drug culture that ran rampant throughout the later Sci-fi writers. Could also put snapshots from around the world with like Stanislaw Lem and Ivan Yefremov.
                            Last edited by Grimmi05; 01-17-2020, 12:48 AM. Reason: typos

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                            • #15
                              I don't know, I'm fine with Nazi punching, I just thought...well..Nazis are squishy humans. A werewolf can literally slaughter entire gangs of them in a single roll. So Nazis without any supernatural assistance are really easy to get rid of. So they're not really a threat so much as they are a mild obstacle, however satisfying it is to overcome them.

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