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  • #16
    Originally posted by The Kings Raven View Post
    This seems backwards to me; since the Geist provides the connection to Death while the Sin-Eater provides the connection to the living.
    I think of it this way: The Sin-Eater is a paradox, a living ghost. He died, plain and simple, but in that moment of death the Geist latched onto him and saved his "life". Now the Sin-Eater acts as something akin to an extremely powerful anchor. The more strongly he anchors the Geist into the living world, by acting on it's passions, the more tightly the Geist roots him to life. Conversely, a Sin-Eater who won't play ball and refuses to accommodate his Geist finds the ghost-spirit's blessing begins to fade.

    Most characters will end up finding a balance, as few will be willing to act on the Geist's passions 100% of the time. They'll end up in a juggling act, carrying out the will of their 'savior' to bind themselves to life, while at the same time attempting to live the life that was saved.



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    • #17
      Where as I've always seen it as a core thematic element that Sin-Eaters are fundamentally normal humans, even if Geists are not.


      “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
      My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
      Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

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      • #18
        Originally posted by The Kings Raven View Post
        Where as I've always seen it as a core thematic element that Sin-Eaters are fundamentally normal humans, even if Geists are not.
        A see Sin-Eaters in much the same way I see Mages, physically and mentally human, but spiritually different. When they died they lost a bit of their soul, a natural part of death, and that hole is now filled by a bizarre spirit-ghost hybrid.

        Also, a brief explanation of why I changed the Manifestation System: A big aim for me in Geist is to up the "weirdness" factor. The element of the unknown is the most essential quality of a ghost story. What is the ghost? What's it capable of? What are it's limits? I want to bring that into Geist on the player side (player, not just character), and the old Key/Manifestation system didn't do that for me. It was too predictable, kinda like in Vampire there are set rules and assumptions players can make (Don't make eye contact with the Ventru, never assume your alone when there's a Mekhet, etc.) For Geist I wanted something entirely unique, where no two characters would ever be alike, even if their character sheets were similar.

        Thus far the Keychain system looks to have accomplished that. Last arc I had players scratching their heads trying to figure out how the newly introduced Geist PC worked. Things he touched blew up, but only sometimes, and with erratic timing. Then there was a fight and suddenly everyone was developing these weird black hand-prints all over their bodies, prints that burned when they tried to run away. Given how interesting it was to watch players puzzle over and uncover their ally's abilities, I'm hoping the same will hold true for antagonists as well.

        Edit: Said character's actual abilities

        Concept: Tyler Durden (Fight Club)
        Geist: Nobody (An ever changing Geist of rebellion)
        Keys: Passion, Pyreflame, Industrial (From Memento)

        Manifestations:
        Core Power: If You Throw the First Punch...
        Passion Bonyard Dice Pool: Power + Empathy
        Action: Instant
        Duration: Scene

        The area around John is filled with a palpable tension, people sense violence is coming and see slights and challenges in every word, it's paranoia to the extreme. Mundane Empathy, Persuasion and Socialize rolls take a -[Successes] penalty, attempts to use Intimidation or Subterfuge to start a fight gain a +[Successes] dice bonus. Characters who do begin to fight automatically Go For Blood and will not back down when injured. Indeed anyone seeking to back down in the scene must spend a point of willpower to do so.
        Link #1: Don't Chicken Out...
        Pyreflame Curse
        Trigger: Whenever someone physically strikes another while under the affects of If You Throw The First Punch...
        ...they are marked with a steaming, unearthly brand in the shape of black handprint. This signifies that the attacking party has consented to a fight till either unconsciousness or death, a fight they won't easily get out of. Once the brand is in place the attacker cannot leave the fight until he or his opponent is dead or unconscious. Should the attacker attempt to leave the fight he is wracked by heat and pain, taking one point of lethal damage, literally burning from the inside out. This damage will continue in subsequent actions until he reenters the fight, or falls unconscious.
        The Sin-Eater can deliberately end this curse by revoking the core power, but doing so uncurses everyone and ends all other effects.
        Link #2: Come At Me
        Passion Caul
        Trigger: Whenever the Sin-Eater brands someone else (because they hit him)...
        ...he is literally fired up, gaining a bonus dot of Stamina and his choice of Strength or Dexterity. This bonus is uncapped, allowing the Sin-Eater to achieve truly massive bonuses in big group fights. Of course, whenever he defeats an attacker the brand they left vanishes, and the bonuses with it.
        Core Power: A Little Problem...
        Industrial Curse
        Dice Pool: Intelligence + Larceny - Object Size
        Action: Instant
        Duration: Permanent


        The reality of our modern society is that it's fragile, more-so than anyone would care to admit. The internet, iPhones, even common machines are all just one little sunspot away from breaking. By touching a complex machine The Sin-Eater (or his Geist) can ruin it. This renders electrical devices completely non-functional, while simple machines (like guns) function only with a successful roll on a chance die.
        Link #1: Can Be A Big Problem
        Pyreflame Rage
        Trigger: When someone attempts, and fails, to use a cursed object...
        ...they inadvertently set off a timer. The object begins to steam visibly, then [That Object's Durability] turns later, it explodes. The radius of this explosion is relative to the size of the object, one yard per one size. Those within the blast radius take lethal damage equal to the object's size, those extremely close to the object (right next to, or worse, inside) double this damage.
        Last edited by PenDragon; 05-14-2014, 02:45 PM.


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        • #19
          Originally posted by PenDragon View Post
          A see Sin-Eaters in much the same way I see Mages, physically and mentally human, but spiritually different. When they died they lost a bit of their soul, a natural part of death, and that hole is now filled by a bizarre spirit-ghost hybrid.
          I don't mind that. It's the implications you draw from it where I disagree.

          Hunter is a game of Second Chances. It's fundamentally about what would you do if you got off your couch and started living life to the full. For that reason, I don't like it when there's magical effects that push you away from living your life the way you want to.

          WoD themes are broad, and there's definately room for things that challange your abiliy to live life to the full; and room for characters who succumb to those challenges, But on the whole it should be possible to portray an incompatible Geist as an antagonist that the Sin-Eater could actually defeat; and then claim her prize of living as a saintly nun who'd never hurt anyone.

          That's why I give Geist's a Passion, but also a Past, and more things that can be played to instead of indulging it's Passion for murder.

          Originally posted by PenDragon View Post
          Also, a brief explanation of why I changed the Manifestation System: A big aim for me in Geist is to up the "weirdness" factor.
          Honestly your manifestation system looks nice and tempting.

          My complaints about the Manifestation system was that it's too powerful and too focused on combat and generally ruining people's day for Geist's themes. If those were fixed in yours I'd probably use it.

          [edit]Somehow I overlooked that spoiler. The power level looks fine and the feel is very Geisty - I didn't like the unbounded bonuses though. Obviously this is combat focused character so I won't hold that against this example.
          Last edited by The Kings Raven; 05-14-2014, 03:32 PM.


          “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
          My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
          Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

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          • #20
            I think it sounds awesome, hope that the urge will seize you to write it up in full if you're willing to share!


            I am no longer participating in the community. Please do not contact me about my previous work.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by The Kings Raven View Post
              I don't mind that. It's the implications you draw from it where I disagree.

              Geist is a game of Second Chances. It's fundamentally about what would you do if you got off your couch and started living life to the full. For that reason, I don't like it when there's magical effects that push you away from living your life the way you want to.

              WoD themes are broad, and there's definately room for things that challange your abiliy to live life to the full; and room for characters who succumb to those challenges, But on the whole it should be possible to portray an incompatible Geist as an antagonist that the Sin-Eater could actually defeat; and then claim her prize of living as a saintly nun who'd never hurt anyone.

              That's why I give Geist's a Passion, but also a Past, and more things that can be played to instead of indulging it's Passion for murder.
              Evolving a Geist should certainly be possible (a quality I'd tie to the Krewe personally). But not easy, said Nun shouldn't be able to change Mr. The Ripper without incredible struggle, hardship, and loss. Otherwise there's no personal horror.

              Plus, if a player has deliberately chosen an adversarial Geist relationship I'd assume they want to experience struggle and loss.
              Originally posted by The Kings Raven View Post
              Honestly your manifestation system looks nice and tempting.

              My complaints about the Manifestation system was that it's too powerful and too focused on combat and generally ruining people's day for Geist's themes. If those were fixed in yours I'd probably use it.
              In terms of power, I'd say it's a step sideways. A Sin-Eater's options plunge without the exponential Key/Manifestation growth, and the Keychain structure encourages specialization. At the same time, however, the loss of dot structure means that individual Manifestations will be stronger (as Rose put it for B&S, Monstrous Out the Gate), and a character can still gain terrific power if he chains enough manifestations. However, because of the way the chains work, the strongest abilities will carry a whole ton of riders, triggers, and conditions the ST can use to moderate power.


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              • #22
                Originally posted by PenDragon View Post
                Evolving a Geist should certainly be possible (a quality I'd tie to the Krewe personally). But not easy, said Nun shouldn't be able to change Mr. The Ripper without incredible struggle, hardship, and loss. Otherwise there's no personal horror.

                Plus, if a player has deliberately chosen an adversarial Geist relationship I'd assume they want to experience struggle and loss.
                Well I never said it had to be easy. Just a valid option in the game.

                Originally posted by PenDragon View Post
                At the same time, however, the loss of dot structure means that individual Manifestations will be stronger (as Rose put it for B&S, Monstrous Out the Gate)
                If a 1 dot Manifestation matches a 3 dot Manifestation under the old system that's fine by me. The 4/5 dot powers where the ones that got stupid.


                “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
                My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
                Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by The Kings Raven View Post
                  If a 1 dot Manifestation matches a 3 dot Manifestation under the old system that's fine by me. The 4/5 dot powers where the ones that got stupid.
                  That's a pretty good baseline. Looking at the original Manifestations again it looks like I haven't really gone much above the 3rd dot in terms of power. Though certain chains have gotten a tad stronger, but those require special circumstances.


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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Leetsepeak View Post
                    I think it sounds awesome, hope that the urge will seize you to write it up in full if you're willing to share!
                    Good lord would that be a lot of work, there are 88 different Key/Manifestation combos (99 if you Include the Hearse, which I do). Plus recommendations and hints for how to chain them.

                    The whole system is hyper dependent on customization, so there'd simply be no way to define all the potential combos. Which is, you know, the whole point.

                    Edit: That said, you can basically run it right out of the book if you're confident in you ability to invent new powers. Just use the current Manifestations as a baseline, round them off at dot 3 or so (it'll vary character to character). And follow these simple guidelines:
                    • Base Powers Cost 1 Plasm and have a dice roll of Attribute + Skill. If you use the Manifest Geist tweak then the Geist is also made manifest.
                      • When a power requires a touch or line-of-sight that can come from either the Sin-Eater or the Geist, both will do.
                    • Chained powers have no cost, and extra rolling should be avoided if possible (if not, add one). They also have a trigger, tied either literally or thematically to the base power, that evokes the effect. (ex. "Whenever my firecar runs someone over...", "When the moon is full...", "When they next sleep...")
                      • There is no limit to how far you can chain powers, nor do individual links have to be dependent on one another. So a chain could go Core Power -> Link 1 -> Link 2. Or Core Power -> Link 1 or 2. Etc.
                    • Experience costs are:
                      • Core Manifestation: 4xp
                      • Threshold Manifestation: 3xp
                      • New Link: 2xp
                    Last edited by PenDragon; 05-14-2014, 06:29 PM.


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                    • #25
                      Yeah, I can see how that'd be challenging, realistically. I guess I'm thinking of the other stuff really, while the Key/Manifestation stuff could be summarized while maybe providing some rough guidelines as to what a combo should be able to do and the like, maybe for one or two of them to give players and storyteller's a touchstone to work off of. That might even be fun, referring to maybe your own player's current combos to give people a good example of the sort of thing they can do.

                      I'd also love to know if you've got more guidelines for statting the Geist that Manifests when you use your Manifestations. Stuff like that.

                      All that said, I don't wanna seem pushy. Whatever else you're willing to share would be awesome. I want to run Geist, but it seems like I'd otherwise be waiting for them to maybe hopefully eventually do a Chronicles book.


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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Leetsepeak View Post
                        Yeah, I can see how that'd be challenging, realistically. I guess I'm thinking of the other stuff really, while the Key/Manifestation stuff could be summarized while maybe providing some rough guidelines as to what a combo should be able to do and the like, maybe for one or two of them to give players and storyteller's a touchstone to work off of. That might even be fun, referring to maybe your own player's current combos to give people a good example of the sort of thing they can do.
                        This is my current biggest blockade, guidelines. Due to the extremely open ended nature of the system it's quite hard to provide a surefire list of guidelines as to what should or shouldn't be possible. Indeed any written "core" Manifestations would need to carry this "This is an example, feel free to use something else if it's appropriate" rider. That can be rough for some players and storytellers, especially those who prefer their rules strictly defined. Sometimes I think it won't work, then I remember Mage: The Ascension and it's off the cuff magic, and that gives me confidence.

                        Now examples, those I can provide. These are some off the top of my head.

                        Originally posted by Leetsepeak View Post
                        I'd also love to know if you've got more guidelines for statting the Geist that Manifests when you use your Manifestations. Stuff like that.
                        I'm still working that out myself, I've yet to be satisfied with any stat spreads. But here's what I'm currently using:
                        • Geist use the standard 5/4/3 stat spread, split between Power, Finesse and Resistance. After distributed the player gains one bonus dot, and may then redistributed a dot from one category to another. A Geist's attribute limits are determined by the Sin-Eater's Psyche, starting at 6 (Psyche 1) and increasing up to 15 (Psyche 10)
                          • 3 Merit points may be spent for another dot during character creation.
                          • New Geist attribute dots cost 3 Experiences each.
                        • Choose the Geist's Passions (Three of Them)
                        • Choose the Geist's Keys (Two of them, no longer limited by Threshold)
                        • Manifesting a Geist is a reflexive action that costs a point of Plasm. Rescinding a Geist is also reflexive, but has no cost.
                          • Once Manifest the Geist is free to move about and act independently (still player controlled), but cannot move more than [Psyche * 10] yards from the Sin-Eater. Within that range it may move in all three dimensions (i.e. Fly), unbounded by gravity or adverse weather.
                          • A Manifest Geist may interact with objects and beings both material and twilight. It remains totally invisible to anyone who could not normally perceive twilight entities, and immune to anything that would not harm a ghost in the twilight.
                        • Geist share the Sin-Eater's Health and Willpower track, therefore any injury the Geist receives is reflected back on the Sin-Eater. Sin-Eaters may, of course, use Plasm to defer this injury as per normal rules. Regardless of severity these injuries will never roll over to Aggravated wounds.
                          • Should a Sin-Eater's Geist be destroyed (by filling it with Lethal) she is put at great risk. Without a Geist she loses access to her Manifestations (but not other applications of Plasm) and a dot of Synergy. Each day without her Geist the Sin-Eater rolls her Synergy in an extended roll aiming to accrue ten successes. If she succeeds, her Geist reforms, if she fails it is lost and with it a critical portion of her Soul. She gains the Soulless condition and a singular impulse: to acquire a new Geist to fill the gaping hole within herself.
                          • A Sin-Eater who lacks a Geist is also vulnerable herself. Without the Geist there is nothing to restore her from death, therefore during the brief Geistless period it becomes possible to permanently kill a Sin-Eater
                        Psyche Table
                        Psyche Plasm/Per Turn Geist Attributes Limit
                        1 10/1 6
                        2 11/2 7
                        3 12/3 8
                        4 13/4 9
                        5 14/5 10
                        6 15/6 11
                        7 20/7 12
                        8 30/8 13
                        9 50/10 14
                        10 75/15 15
                        Last edited by PenDragon; 05-14-2014, 09:37 PM.


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                        • #27
                          Some thoughts

                          Blazing Firecar. It took me two reads to realise this is the result of a Geist possessing an existing car; but is there any particular reason why you didn't have the Geist transform into a car instead? It seems to me that Ghost Rider type characters are deeply invested in their ride, and not just in supercharging whatever's nearby.

                          Driven Beyond Death. This power directly affects the mechanics of the afterlife; something of immense thematic weight to Geist. I wouldn't do that lightly. My suggestion would be to add a line saying "when the Ghost escapes the chains, it becomes a regular Ghost or Passes On as it would under normal circumstances."

                          Drag me to Hell. This one says the Ghost has 300 feet to escape, but it's triggered when it runs out of essence. Ghosts with no Essence can't escape. Is the intent that the first ghost to run dry gives you a chance to destroy all of them? Again this power directly affects the mechanics of the afterlife, I would suggest replacing the bit about hellish oblivion with dumping them into the Underworld or filling their health with Aggravated damage.


                          Final thought: This power grabs and destroys ghosts. Which is cool. A power set in which the ghosts are forced to attack your enemies (or just everything nearby) instead of being dragged to hell would make a great second choice. I don't think you could combine them, but it makes a neat additional example of how two similar powers might diverge.


                          Still. All in all, a great example of how this system can really capture that Sin-Eater feel in a way that the "vast and flexible powers, all about hurting that guy, does not"


                          “There are no rules. Only Principles and natural laws.” - Promethius
                          My Homebrew no longer fits in a signature, you can find an index of it here.
                          Full length fan-books I contributed too: Princess: the Hopeful, Leviathan: the Tempest, Dream Catchers

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                          • #28
                            These were all written off the top of my head, to provide general examples. Blazing Firecar could reasonably manifest a vehicle (that'd be based on character preference, which is again the whole point of the system), Driven Beyond Death and Drag Me to Hell would need a bit more clarification and nitty gritty on the rules, but I think they got the point across.

                            Hopefully those are helpful to you Leetespeak.


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                            • #29
                              They are. I'm liking these guidelines a bunch, my girlfriend and I have been discussing Geist and she just cracked open the corebook for it, so the stuff I've heard has me searching for alternative stuff to spice up the rules.


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                              • #30
                                Awesome! What I've made of the system thus far is really just an outline, with a bit of testing and a lot of on-the-fly rulings.

                                For the sake of ease, I've put the whole outline (with a few tweaks) in a Google doc: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1...ZOYXrh7Q/edit#

                                If you have any other questions, comments, or confusions don't hesitate to ask.

                                Edit: Also added additional examples, and a tweak to damage reduction more fit to GMC's damage model.
                                Last edited by PenDragon; 05-17-2014, 05:13 AM.


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