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  • Random Question...

    Is there any good reason why none of the merits that give you information have any sort of interaction with the Clue subsystem?

    Like, not even "Oh and you can use this in place of an Investigation roll to find clues" or whatever.

    Granted, the whole investigation system feels slapped on and note entirely thought through. And it doesn't help that the merits that interact with it make the entire affair pointless.

    (It's way too easy to get Clues, since the "get more Clues" stuff is per roll, rather than per investigation.)

    EDIT: I'm dumb - I misremembered the stuff that adds elements as stuff that adds Clues. Doy.
    Last edited by amechra; 05-18-2016, 05:51 PM.


    I have decided, after some thought, that I don't really feel happy on these forums. I might decide to come back to post. Who knows - but right now, I'm gone.

    So good bye, good luck, and have a nice day.

  • #2
    To clarify:

    • Automatic Writing... come on, it straight up gives you relevant clues. Even if it didn't give you capital-c Clues, it would be nice if you could use them to unearth Clues that you could actually use in a court of law (which is totally genre appropriate).
    • Contacts are clearly something you could use to get a Clue - I wish that had been clearly written out, though.
    • Eye for the Strange literally gives you hard, confirming details as to supernatural involvement or lack thereof. Why doesn't it explicitly interact with the investigation subsystem?
    • Mind of Madman does give you that 8-again benefit... but I'd also like it if it gave you the ability to straight-up pull a limited number of Clues out of your ass. Kind of a "if I was the murderer, where would I stash the weapon..." type thing.
    • It would be really cool if Taste let you add elements to Clues in an appropriate kind of investigation - it'd make it come up more, at the very least.



    Investigative Prodigy is inordinately good, though.

    It's one of those things where you need a compelling reason to not take at least one dot if your character is any sort of detective. Investigative Prodigy • means you'll always get two Clues when you successfully Uncover a Clue. Not game breaking, but it isn't something you'd pass up, either.

    It'd be like the following:

    Social Prodigy (•)
    Prerequisites: Presence •••, Persuasion •••
    Effect: Whenever you successfully make a roll to open doors while Social Maneuvering, open an additional door.

    It's not like that kind of thing doesn't have a place, it's just that it's too good as a one dot merit that requires stuff that you're going to have anyway.

    It's kind of like Professional Training - "I've got a job history" is something you can work into your character trivially, so anyone who wants to get some Contacts has a choice between paying 1xp for one contact or 1xp for two contacts. Sure, those two contacts have to be related to your profession, but that's not a huge restriction.

    Untouchable is also really, really excessive for its cost (which is trivial, since Manipulation ••• and Subterfuge •• are things you'd take anyway as any sort of conman/liar/corporate exec); I wonder if whoever wrote that forgot that you can't use Incomplete Clues to Uncover the Truth, so it's 1xp for "the entire investigation subsystem is practically useless against me".


    I would kind of like it if there was some kind of Clue Tag for evidence dragged up through supernatural means. The real problem is trying to figure out something it could do that wouldn't make it redundant in the face of the Incomplete Tag.


    I have decided, after some thought, that I don't really feel happy on these forums. I might decide to come back to post. Who knows - but right now, I'm gone.

    So good bye, good luck, and have a nice day.

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    • #3
      Yeah - the new subsystems are pretty haphazard in their inclusion in the rest of the material and how well they are represented in the Merits. Which is a damn shame because the Investigation system is a really handy, solid idea, and one that was implemented (miraculously) without getting too complicated or intrusive.

      Originally posted by amechra View Post
      Investigative Prodigy • means you'll always get two Clues when you successfully Uncover a Clue. Not game breaking, but it isn't something you'd pass up, either.
      While I'm no fan of the Merit at higher dots, I'll note that Investigative Prodigy • doesn't seem to do anything, which is not a vote in its favor.

      Originally posted by amechra View Post
      I would kind of like it if there was some kind of Clue Tag for evidence dragged up through supernatural means. The real problem is trying to figure out something it could do that wouldn't make it redundant in the face of the Incomplete Tag.
      Maybe something like this?

      Occult
      Occult Clues are generated via supernatural means and gain an extra element. If elements of an Occult Clue are used to Uncover the Truth, a single complication related to the hidden world unfolds during the revelation. Some example complications:
      * A supernatural entity becomes aware of the investigator or culprit.
      * A witness or bit player in the case is exposed to something supernatural.
      * An occult society takes interest in the event and intervenes to protect or co-opt the culprit.
      * The crime in question was among the machinations of an occult society or monstrous covenant.
      * The revelation of the case hints at some greater, horrifying pattern.


      I attack people with giant insects both on and off the court.

      Comment


      • #4
        Man, I misread Investigative Prodigy... that's awful.

        Making it cost two Merit dots instead of one to double your Clues per roll - is still too easy a pick.

        Making it do literally nothing if you take one dot in it... yeah. No.

        ---

        On a more positive note, I like that Occult tag. Those are good complications.


        I have decided, after some thought, that I don't really feel happy on these forums. I might decide to come back to post. Who knows - but right now, I'm gone.

        So good bye, good luck, and have a nice day.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by amechra View Post
          To clarify:

          • Automatic Writing... come on, it straight up gives you relevant clues. Even if it didn't give you capital-c Clues, it would be nice if you could use them to unearth Clues that you could actually use in a court of law (which is totally genre appropriate).
          • Contacts are clearly something you could use to get a Clue - I wish that had been clearly written out, though.
          • Eye for the Strange literally gives you hard, confirming details as to supernatural involvement or lack thereof. Why doesn't it explicitly interact with the investigation subsystem?
          • Mind of Madman does give you that 8-again benefit... but I'd also like it if it gave you the ability to straight-up pull a limited number of Clues out of your ass. Kind of a "if I was the murderer, where would I stash the weapon..." type thing.
          • It would be really cool if Taste let you add elements to Clues in an appropriate kind of investigation - it'd make it come up more, at the very least.
          File this under "just because the rules don't explicitly spell it out doesn't mean you can't do it" because I would allow literally all of these to work with the Investigation system.

          • Automatic Writing lets the character write a number of clues (lower-case c) equal to successes on a Wits + Composure roll, which are nonsensical at first, but can be deciphered with further Wits + Investigation rolls. Ok, easy peasy. Just make the initial Wits + Composure roll give the characters access to a number of potential Clues (capital C) equal to successes, with the dice pool for Uncovering them fixed as Wits + Investigation.
          • Contacts "Garnering information via Contacts requires a Manipulation + Social Skill roll, depending on the method the character uses, and the relationship between the characters." There you go, that Manipulation + Social Skill roll is now an Uncovering Clues roll.
          • Eye for the Strange lets you make an Intelligence + Composure roll to determine if something was caused by supernatural forces. If it wasn't, you get +2 to further rolls to investigate. Sounds to me like an Uncovering Clues roll that grants a Clue with additional Element if the culprit isn't supernatural and automatically removes any Tainted tags on Clues that incorrectly indicated a supernatural cause.
          • Mind of a Madman grants 8-again, and that 8-again could apply to Uncovering Clues rolls, so it interacts with the system just fine already. It doesn't really give you new information, so it wouldn't make much sense for it to give you Clues. Under ST discretion, being in the killer's mindset might let you justify some Uncovering Clues rolls you wouldn't otherwise have been able to make.
          • Taste's Wits + Skill roll could make for an Uncovering Clues roll in an appropriate Investigation. Since it grants a +1 bonus to rolls related to the insight into the work per success, I'd say that's justification for an extra Element per success.


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

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Charlaquin View Post
            File this under "just because the rules don't explicitly spell it out doesn't mean you can't do it" because I would allow literally all of these to work with the Investigation system.

            • Automatic Writing lets the character write a number of clues (lower-case c) equal to successes on a Wits + Composure roll, which are nonsensical at first, but can be deciphered with further Wits + Investigation rolls. Ok, easy peasy. Just make the initial Wits + Composure roll give the characters access to a number of potential Clues (capital C) equal to successes, with the dice pool for Uncovering them fixed as Wits + Investigation.
            • Contacts "Garnering information via Contacts requires a Manipulation + Social Skill roll, depending on the method the character uses, and the relationship between the characters." There you go, that Manipulation + Social Skill roll is now an Uncovering Clues roll.
            • Eye for the Strange lets you make an Intelligence + Composure roll to determine if something was caused by supernatural forces. If it wasn't, you get +2 to further rolls to investigate. Sounds to me like an Uncovering Clues roll that grants a Clue with additional Element if the culprit isn't supernatural and automatically removes any Tainted tags on Clues that incorrectly indicated a supernatural cause.
            • Mind of a Madman grants 8-again, and that 8-again could apply to Uncovering Clues rolls, so it interacts with the system just fine already. It doesn't really give you new information, so it wouldn't make much sense for it to give you Clues. Under ST discretion, being in the killer's mindset might let you justify some Uncovering Clues rolls you wouldn't otherwise have been able to make.
            • Taste's Wits + Skill roll could make for an Uncovering Clues roll in an appropriate Investigation. Since it grants a +1 bonus to rolls related to the insight into the work per success, I'd say that's justification for an extra Element per success.
            The problem with all this is that what's even the point of putting in a subsystem if you have a ton of things sidestepping it?

            It's obvious you can do things like this. It's aesthetically unpleasing to have things working towards the same end without acknowledging each other.


            I have decided, after some thought, that I don't really feel happy on these forums. I might decide to come back to post. Who knows - but right now, I'm gone.

            So good bye, good luck, and have a nice day.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by amechra View Post
              The problem with all this is that what's even the point of putting in a subsystem if you have a ton of things sidestepping it?

              It's obvious you can do things like this. It's aesthetically unpleasing to have things working towards the same end without acknowledging each other.
              I mean, that's kind of what happens when you add new subsystems after the initial release of the rules. When 1e added optional rules for Social and Mental Combat, there was a huge back-catalogue of Mental and Social Merits and other character elements that didn't interact with those systems.

              If you want to use optional subsystems you either have to accept that character elements that predate them won't plug into them, or fiddle with those elements to make them work within systems they were not initially designed for. But unless you're an actual Master of the Time Arcanum, you can't design character elements to tie into systems that haven't been written yet.

              Personally, I just don't use the Investigation subsystem. I feel it unnecessarily mechanizes a process that is better handled organically, and it came late enough in the game that most templates don't have any elements that interact with it in their core books. But if I did feel like using it for some reason, the above are ways that I would integrate the Merits in question into the Investigation rules.


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

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by amechra View Post
                The problem with all this is that what's even the point of putting in a subsystem if you have a ton of things sidestepping it?
                1) Not all of those things are accessible in every game.

                2) Esp. for supernatural powers (Merit or otherwise) being able to side-step rules is often what makes them feel powerful. Vampires can use Dominate to side-step Social Maneuvering. Werewolves can use Gauru form to side-step full combat. Etc. This opens up a different mentality for play. Instead of, "can I even do X via the subsystem in question," as being a major source of uncertainty and dramatic tension, you can focus on, "should I do this the hard way, or the easy way?" instead.

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                • #9
                  I tried the system once (tho, I only had one investigative storyline after seeing the rules, but anyways) and they seem very strange to me... but it's most likely because I did not use it as intended (that is, having players make stuff up, where I tried to use it as a tool to solve them a pre-existing scheme... guess I should try it some time with the whole "ending is uncertain" angle...


                  My Bloodline conversions
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                  • #10
                    Investigation system is a nice way to "manage" information-as-equipment, and not much beyond that.

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                    • #11
                      I would argue strenuously (even if there are a few places the text is uncertain) that the Investigation system is a nice way to make investigations more collaborative and involved for the players. Sure it isn't everyone's preference (but it isn't that hard to go back to the older way of doing things), but the whole point is to let go of the mentality that Investigations should be a series of discrete steps the ST makes up before the players get from A to B. Players get to influence the progress of an investigation to make it interesting; adding more player buy-in to the process, and taking away from putting everything on the ST to make an investigation fun and interesting while the players would otherwise have little to do but roll dice.

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                      • #12
                        The game that I really wanted to see make use of Investigation rules was Mage.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by MCN View Post
                          The game that I really wanted to see make use of Investigation rules was Mage.
                          It will be, in Signs of Sorcery. Hell, we even have spoiler now how to connect new Mage Sight rules with Investigation subsystem, adding interesting layer to Focused Mage Sight were you can find Clues to lower Opacity.

                          You do not need to brute force your Sight to uncover dozen of layers to get to particular Clue and information with it - you can easily go to Atheneum, Lorehouse or even Librarary of your known cabal that is interested in this stuff. More - you can cast appropriate Knowing spell and if you get particular information - i.e. Clue - it can also lower Opacity! And it will even help to understand whole Mystery in long term, as uncovered Clue will lower Opacity of phenomenon for you. Win-win!
                          Last edited by wyrdhamster; 05-29-2016, 12:35 AM.


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