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Beast Analysis & Hacks #3: Mythology, the Monomyth and Mythic Recurrence

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  • Beast Analysis & Hacks #3: Mythology, the Monomyth and Mythic Recurrence

    Alright, third essay of the series. You probably know the drill by know.

    Gonna post the first two parts together. They’re related and it makes sense to do so. The last one will come in a couple of days, just so I don’t drop a huge text on all of you.

    As always, I hope you'll enjoy the reading but this is first of all fuel for discussion. Don't hesitate to tell me if you agree or disagree with something.

    Heresy Rating: overall 4/5. Some parts are quite close to canon, but I throw out some rather wild theories and ideas here and there.
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    Mythology, the Monomyth and Mythic Recurrence


    “You are of the Pantheon. You will be loved. You will be hated. You will be brilliant. Within two years you will be dead”

    -The Wicked + The Divine

    I’m a mythology geek. It goes back to my childhood: when I was a little kid the stories I asked for were monster ones and my parents answered to that with Odysseus, Hercules, Scylla and Charybdis. I added my passion for Egypt to that and pestered them for months until they found a book suitable for a kid that opened the way to Anubis, Set, Horus (my favorite trio). Growing up, I expanded that passion to other mythologies and nowadays it grew in such a big thing for me that I know bits from pretty much everywhere and will give a chance to anything related to myths.

    The things I write often hide references to myths and play with them because it’s fun and something that makes me feel good. Again, mythology geek.

    There’s a reason I love Scion and Beast.

    “Come on Cinder, yet another element of Beast’s DNA you’re telling us you’ve loved for ages?”

    Hey, I know it’s getting ridiculous, but it’s not my fault if it’s as if this game checked on the list of stuff I like and decided to go for most of it. It’s almost eerie at times.

    All this serves as premise to my confession:

    I never cared much about The Hero with a Thousand Faces

    I know, I know. I read it, I recognize its merits and its importance, know what the deal with Campbell’s monomyth is...but I’m not a fan. Back in my teenage years (which was not that long ago but crap I’m suddenly 27 and feel so old), I used to actively oppose it with the aid of the iconoclastic passion that comes with being a teen. Even nowadays I try to ignore it’s a thing. Not sure how much is me not actually liking what Joseph Campbell wrote and how much is me being afraid he might be right and not wanting to know how the rules behind the magic are, but that’s how it is.

    It’s weird, because those elements that Campbell started from when he came up with his theories? Love them. Stuff like mythical recurrence, subconscious symbolism, archetypes hidden within the human mind that might have a higher meaning? Common narratives found across different cultures? Patchworks made with the common themes of different myths? The kind of stuff Jung had fun with when he wanted to piss Freud off? I’m 100% into that. I can rant about that for hours (and I’m kinda already doing so here)

    It’s about what Campbell built upon from that I honestly can’t be bothered to think much about.

    This just for saying that, yes, this analysis will talk about the monomyth as Beast envisions it among other things, but it’s gonna be less reverential towards The Hero with a Thousand Faces than one might reasonably expect.

    Alright, time for the Mythology essay. Enjoy the ride.



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  • #2
    Legend, Life and life as a legend. Part 1: Where the universe says you’re awesome

    Some anthropology books and a lot of modern writers trying to sound badass theorize that stories and myths are a fundamental part of what makes mankind...well, mankind. Jokes aside, it’s hard to deny the importance legends and narratives have for the human experience. Ancient myths might have been what the easy definition says they are, “ways cultures without scientific knowledge explain the phenomena of the world”, but if you ask me that’s only a partial truth that reeks of arrogance a little too easily. Yes, many myths do that, but it’s more a consequence than a cause. Fact is, even outside our hobby of playing make-believe for fun, people care for stories. We grow up with them, they define our personality, ideals and goals, meaning that they also define our culture on the longer term.

    Even nowadays people create myths and devote themselves to them, the only exception being that the temples of these new myths are theaters, libraries, stages and screens. The old ones instead survive because they struck a chord in the shared imaginary of mankind that granted a place in the hearts of people that lasts to this very day.

    Perhaps the oldest narratives, the most basic one that everyone seem to have already understanding of no matter what, is the following: there’s a threat of some sort and someone sets out to eliminate it and make things better.

    It’s a natural consequence of perhaps the most primordial impulse of the human mind: have fear. That’s part of the basic package of survival instincts, to be careful of dangers and threats. Have fear of something that can kill you, eat you, destroy you. Have fear of the unknown. Have fear of the monster.

    Which leads to the obvious next stage to that tapestry of thoughts, nightmares and instincts: the need for someone to destroy the monster. Someone that can improve things for everyone and do what others cannot. The one being that embodies what people can do when they overcome fear, the inspiration that allows us to believe dragons can be defeated. Mankind in its sublimed state, for good or ill. A hero, in other words.

    Hero and villain. Monster and monster slayer. Menace and protection. Life and Death, Fear and Courage. You find it on the walls of the caves just as much as you find it in a kid playing with two toys. It’s both the Chaoskampf and that franchise of movies everybody loves. It’s the monomyth.

    Now imagine being part of it.

    In an actual sense, with the might of the subconscious of the entire human race pushing you to the center of the stage of that conflict. That’s where Beast and Heroes are, right in the middle of it.

    (The second most ancient kind of narrative is arguably about love and sex, which has little to do with this topic but is still worth mentioning)

    Except Beasts and Heroes are not supposed to be seen as the abstract monsters and champions of legends. They’re that but also actual characters in a less mythical, more down-to-earth setting.

    (Yeah, I know it sounds weird when talking about the CoD, but bear with me)

    Myths have a clarity of intents that Beast intentionally lacks because, like many recent works that build upon legend and ancient tales, the interesting stuff happens when you cross modern sensibilities and character perspectives with the candid, at times impersonal, straightforwardness of myths. Nuance and subversions for a genre that thrives on being direct and impactful.

    So let’s explore that: what it means to be a living legend.

    A recurring question that comes up when talking about the Begotten and Heroes is why would anyone be into what they do. Unlike other supernaturals, after all, Beast have a greater degree of choice on the matter and Heroes, while less free to choose, can still decide how to deal with their heroic call.

    The short answer is that powers are cool and help to get what you want. Plus the central theme of accepting your nature and coming to terms with it. Both are good answers, but I think there’s another aspect the books haven’t explored much that’s also interesting and related to this topic.

    In a way, I’m talking about that being so resonant with the human subconscious, being the living embodiment of the tales that shaped the world and cultures the characters lived in, being mythical, feels really good.

    It’s not exactly the same as Mage’s hubris or the “usual” risk to feel superior that comes with gaining supernatural powers. Rather, it’s the instinctive awareness of being made of the literal stuff of legend.

    Gonna borrow a couple of old Changeling terms to drive the point home.

    The CoD setting is one where monsters are real and at the same time a darker reflection of our world. One of different flavor from the WoD one but still a reflection. “Ordinary” people have to deal with the same issues real world people have to deal with, issues amplified even more by the nature of the setting. It’s understandable for people to leave things like dreams and ideals behind, a sort of price to keep going, pay the bills and ignore the monsters in the darkness. Ennui is a common thing. Banality seems mandatory.

    Except when it suddenly is not. Not anymore, at least, because it turns out you belong to those very same stories that seemed childish fantasies just the day before. You have a higher purpose, you’re important, a symbol, a legend in the making. Your actions, your enemies and your triumphs, everything related to you has a palpable impact on those surrounding you.

    It’s something even we can imagine but, in-setting, Beast and Heroes have the added bonus that the Astral and the Primordial Dream make pressure on the real world (and all the other worlds connected to it) in such way that the role the Begotten and their foes have both perpetuates and empowers the entire monomyth they belong to. It’s a process that became autonomous long ago and would be pretty much impossible to stop without messing with the cognition of the whole human race on an universal scale.

    Which in turn means the mythic cycle exists because people, monsters, Beast, Heroes and the very same pillars of the universe are persuaded on a fundamental level that the cycle should exist. Everything related to it (fears, lessons, nightmares, conflicts, the Primordial Dream and perhaps even the Dark Mother) is both a consequence and a cause of the monomyth itself.

    As the main actors of this cosmic play, Beast and Heroes have all the chances to either reiterate, subvert or deconstruct the mythic cycle but it does not change the most fundamental truth: the monster and the hero will cross each other’s path, with the world watching.

    And that’s fucking intoxicating.

    Of course, this all comes before Hunger, feeding, Family and the urge to kill the guy living next door to you because your instincts tell you he’s a four-armed giant, so it’s not like the awesomeness of knowing you’re a legend is all there is to being a Beast or a Hero.

    But it’s there and denying it would deprive the game of a source of interesting plot hooks and character development.
    Last edited by Cinder; 01-21-2018, 01:16 PM.


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    • #3
      Legend, Life and life as a legend. Part 2: Where the universe won’t shut up about it

      The problem with being the living embodiment of a cultural and subconscious narrative is that, surprise surprise, everyone also expects you to act according to that narrative.Except you’re not a spirit: you’re a person, with goals, ideas, friends and foes.

      Myths are part of what Heroes and Beast are, but they’re only a portion of their DNA. They’re not their Legend just as much as they’re not their Life: they’re a combination of both and even more. Aspirations, Attributes, Skills and Merits too.

      The moment where the monomyth and the characters meet is then the moment when things get complicated.

      The most glaring and important conflict born out of this is nothing less that the central one when it comes to Beast and the monomyth: the relationship with Heroes.

      The core book already talks about this (and I love those brief fiction paragraphs in the Monomyth section), Conquering Heroes does too and there are really good odds either the Player’s or the Storyteller’s guide will further explore the topic, so I’ll be brief here.

      (Besides, I’ve got a Hero essay on the list of things to do, so it’s a topic I’ll have to deal with again)

      Heroes are already wired to believe Beast are monsters and when they meet one, well, they find confirmation of that. Beast are monsters, that’s the whole point. The variables don’t come from that side, but rather from the people that monsters and the monster slayers are. Problem is, Beast also expect Heroes to be the enemy. Part of this has to to with the previous topic that the monomyth has conditioned them both to believe so and the Astral ephemera that runs through their souls says the same, but a big part of it is also cultural and historical.

      Beast and Heroes have killed each other for ages. Fancy metaphysics aside, people remember and stories are told. Worse, Beast and Heroes are killing each other right now, everywhere. For each tale about a Brood managing to deal with a Hero in a non-violent way there are hundreds where their encounters ended with one of the parts not walking away. It’s pretty much a memetically enforced blood-drenched feud that has lasted forever, the kind of stuff that tends to make first impressions really, really difficult. It usually goes downhill from there, understandably so.

      But the effects myths have is not limited to the protagonists of the mythic cycle and their nemesis: other people were taught that things work a certain way as well.

      In a mechanism that in a certain way exists for the same reason Anathema do, people who know even little bits about legends expect Beast’s monstrous side to work according to certain conventions.

      Some of it is cultural (you’re a wendigo so you eat human flesh), some of it is religious (you’re a horned monster of fire and brimstone so you’re an agent of Satan and make pacts with people), some of it is more general (you’re a dragon so you have a treasure hidden somewhere).

      This perception can be really annoying and deleterious for a Beast, not only because each Horror is different and there’s no set of rules for them to follow, but also because it raises expectations and forces the Begotten into roles she might not want to have anything to do with. It’s through this that unwanted worshippers, stalkers, dangerous fans and other kinds of obsessed followers happen. Granted, it’s mundane attention, but the fact those who suffer from it have no special powers to track a Beast down does not make it it less of a problem.

      Just to make a couple of examples:

      A guy/gal is convinced he/she is the Beauty to your Beast and that him/her is the only one able to understand you and that the other people in your Brood and Heroes are only there to get in your way. Have fun dealing with that.

      You feed your Hunger for Punishment in a perhaps too flashy way and suddenly there’s a bunch of people convinced you’re there to settle their grudges. At first they might offer you legitimate targets but when they try to use you to eliminate whoever they dislike and are outraged to learn that no, you’re not gonna indulge them, things get a lot more complicated.

      Surprise, you have a cult! You’re not even sure how it happened, but now there’s a bunch of less than stable people who have built their little religion around you. The more you try to push them away and the more they’re convinced you’re just testing them. It was somewhat innocuous at first, but now you keep noticing they’re following you and putting at risk not only your secrecy but that of the Family as well.


      Even if your Horror is a resembles an ice giant straight out of a Norse saga you’re still uncomfortable about those guys that decided to take you as a symbol for their little reunions about racial superiority and blood purity. Who was the idiot that had that idea in the first place, anyways? And what are they willing to do if you ever happen to “betray” their ideal?

      It’s obvious when you think about it, isn’t it? Heroes have it too, either in the shape of Followers or their own brand of stalkers. Just as being mythical feels good, the proximity to a myth feels amazing as well, to the point many would rather force themselves into the legend rather than ignore the sheer importance of Beast and Heroes.

      Other supernaturals are more resistant to, but not completely immune. Some might want to exploit Beast for their purposes, some will want to learn about their mysteries and other might just want for Beast to behave as it benefits them the most.

      Overall, being a living legend grants lots of benefits but it all comes with a cost.


      The last point is perhaps more impersonal and the furthest one from canon I have to offer, but I think it’s still a cool one:

      What happens when actual, specific myths start manifesting in a Beast’s life and are beyond her control?

      A story that gets told so many times it becomes a legend resonates in the Astral and in the Shadow. Some of the symbols of those legends have Supernal significance.

      There’s power in that. Power that sometimes comes back to source.

      It’s here that being a mythology geek turns things into a playground.

      It allows to insert so many shout-outs into a game to make Beast and Heroes doubt whether they have control over their life or not. As if, to borrow a Scion’s term, if Fate is pulling the strings from the shadows.

      Things like having a Beast with a giant wolf as a Horror bite down the hand of a Hero and suddenly a pair of crows follows her wherever she goes and a giant sea snake Beast and one who resembles a half-living, half-corpse lady become part of the Brood (like brother and sister). Or an oni becoming unable to not think that starting to walk around with a spiked war club would be really cool, subtlety be damned. A Cerberus Beast being inexplicably drawn to the depths of the Underworld, as if he belongs there. A sphynx developing a passion for riddles. What about the Hero that just won’t leave alone a chimera Beast riding a motorbike with a winged horse drawn on it?

      You get the idea.

      Beast with more “modern” Horrors aren’t necessarily safe from this. First, because mythical and symbolical analogies are not only a matter of superficial trappings. Second, because while their Legend and Lair grow, those Beast might discover that there was a deeper meaning to their Horror. A Begotten whose Horror embodies the fear of a world suddenly returning to a no-technology state, death of the civilization as we know it with it, might discover something in common with Tiamat planning to flood the world and return to the primordial chaos.

      Narrative recurrence and subconscious symbolism are a big deal exactly because we can’t help but to make connections when we relate to the world. Avoiding them is not an easy feat.

      Imagine phenomena or creatures that exist to because myths won’t leave Beast and Heroes be, in yet another self-perpetuating aspect of the mythic cycle. Shades of past beliefs and parasite born from the human consciousness that refuse to stay dead. I think there’s tons to take out of this.

      (Yes, this is also me shilling my upcoming Mythophagi, which are just a bunch of ordinary critters that in all fairness don’t need this preparation. What can I say? As a writer of fanmade content, sometimes you have to promote yourself to get the attention you crave for)

      Now, I’m not saying that Beast should surrender to this: I’m saying they should fight to live their own legend and their own life. Myth aggressively pushing in are yet another element of pressure for the Begotten. I belong to the race of storytellers that believes you should complicate the lives of your characters so much they’d punch you if they had the chance.

      Still, I believe it’s a source of troubles that plays well with the themes. I said before that I’m totally convinced that one of the central themes of Beast is the struggle the find the strength to stand up and say “Yes, this is me and I’m gonna live my life how I want to live it, screw whatever people who hate me for merely existing say and how everyone expects me to act. I’m gonna make my choices no matter what. It’s not perfect and I will 100% make mistakes, but those are my mistakes and it’s only up to me to deal with them and their consequences”.

      An ancient tradition coming to life and trying to erase your individuality by turning you into the character it decided you are is another opportunity to say “fuck that”, try, succeed or succumb.

      And, no surprise here, another reason for me to love this game.
      Last edited by Cinder; 01-21-2018, 12:08 AM.


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      • #4
        Part 3: Heritage

        The other big topic that comes to my mind when discussing the consequences myths have on Beast is the following: as characters playing a role in the iterations of the monomyth, the Begotten and Heroes belong to a heritage. Ancient stories and legends inevitably color their actions and contribute to the perception people have of them. But what exactly means to become an active part of this primordial heritage?

        A lot of the questions are related to Horrors. We know that Horrors are a portion of a Beast’s soul. Fair enough, but what about a Horror that had already merged with a Begotten and resurfaces from the depths of the Primordial Dream centuries later?

        Horrors honestly are at the same time the source of so many enigmas and ideas.

        If Horrors are independent from the Begotten this is a relatively easy issue: they awaken when they feel a potential Beast that resonates with their nature and would allow for a successful merging of their souls. It’s still a cool option, where a creature of ancient might selects you to be the inheritor of their power allowing to a new individual to be born from the union between the two of you.

        That said, I would prefer for each Beast to have its Horror, since I see the Devouring as an act equivalent to recognizing yourself while looking into the abyss. You are the Horror and the Horror is you. Admittedly, the Horrors seemingly being able to survive the death of a Beast complicates the matter, but there are a lot of ways this would still work.

        First of all there’s the fact that nothing says that a Horror, no matter how similar to a previous one, has to be the exact same.

        The Primordial Dream is an universal reality. The circumstances that lead to a Horror’s birth tap into a huge and widespread tapestry of fear, symbolism, archetypes and narratives. There’s room for many Horrors sharing some characteristics across the ages. I mean, it’s not like there can be only one dragon Horror in the world. It’s probably a good idea to not have two or more in the same Brood (unless there’s a story behind it and there are
        plentyof ways to make it interesting), but still. Not to mention the fact that similar Horrors might be seen as emanation of the same nightmarish archetype, a sort of platonic ideal of that specific construct of fears. A sort of reverse Supernal emanation, if you will, where the highest truth comes from the human subconscious. Or, why not, perhaps two different people might have a similar Horror because both are actually connected to the nightmare and myth behind it in their own way. Two Typhon that exist at the same time because the identities of their human host were both resonant to the creature, for example. These interpretations find an already solid foundation within the books.


        The next most immediate solution is the reincarnation route. A Beast, (normal, Unfettered, Rampant or Incarnate) is indeed the result of the union between a human and a Horror. They become complete when the parts of their soul reunite and make them whole through the Devouring. Except this wholeness does not survive the trauma of death in this case. If a Begotten is destroyed, the human portion of his soul ascends to a cycle of death and rebirth while the Horror returns to sleep in the darkness of the Primordial Dream. The state of a Beast at the moment of its destruction does not matter: a Rampant and Unfettered still have traces of all their aspects within their souls, it’s the balance that’s lacking.

        This means that when a soul reincarnates into a new identity, the Horror recognizes it for the missing part of it the new person is. It’s not a given: sometimes the person might refuse a Devouring and others the Horror might not hear the call, but it still leads for the two portions of a Beast’s soul to try and reunite with each other across the ages. With the chance to have Broods made of the various incarnations of the same Family members and Heroes reborn coming after you (plus elements of a reincarnation stories like memories of past lives and drama) it opens the way to a lot of of bittersweet or just plainly tragic story arcs.


        Of course, it’s also possible to keep Horrors more personal by highlighting their aspect of inheritance. A character might inherit a Horror and become a Beast completely different from those who merged with that Horror before, but there’s still a bond between them. Whether this is a good thing or not, it depends. Mundane connections (there’s always been a One-Eyed Hag in town, everybody knows it), more fateful ones (all those who answer to the name of Green Dragon have been slain by the same spear) or even simple prejudices (the Gossamer Devil always picks colossal jerks as its hosts) are likely to alter the social interactions of a Beast belonging to this kind of “dynasty”. Some might even held the Beast accountable for the actions of her ancestors and expect her to deal with unfinished business or pay for mistakes and slights. The biggest problems arise from those supernaturals for whom mortality is not an issue: vampires, mummies with good memory, ghosts, spirits, fae, Strix, idigams…

        All in all, it’s another way to have a ton of potential plot hooks, character interactions and drama happening



        (If you wonder what option I’m using for my games, the short answer is: each of them. Bits of all of those. Some Beast might be reincarnation, some aren’t. Some play with an inheritance, some just happen to have similar horrors. No real answers and plenty of of half-truths, just to keep the mystery alive. I think the chaos kinda fits the Primordial Dream, so I avoid picking a single truth.

        Also, if some of the ideas seem to be stolen from Exalted, it’s because they are)

        A Begotten might come to hate this sort of heritage or become proud of it and amp it up as a way to gain a certain reputation. Whether this proves useful or causes more trouble is anyone’s guess, but while a Beast might have something to gain from its legend spreading both in the real and dream world, it likely also means that Heroes would notice her more easily.

        Pros and cons, as always.
        Last edited by Cinder; 01-22-2018, 07:16 PM.


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        • #5
          Have you noticed how many gods,even benevolent gods could very easily be Beasts? Anubis ,Tezcatlipoca,Sun Wukong. Michael the archangel,Thor,Hercules. All of them can be terrible,can create fear and have hungers to feed? Thor and Hercules feel like Heroes at first glance,but they're much wilder,much more bestial than your average Hero. They almost feel more like Beasts that simply have other Beasts as enemies

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          • #6
            Oh another note. Do you think Beasts would say pangaens are Family?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Nicolas Milioni View Post
              Oh another note. Do you think Beasts would say pangaens are Family?

              I'm not Cinder, but hell yeah. I'd say they're like the grandparents of your grandparents that lived through what you see in your History textbooks. I wouldn't be surprised if Beasts in the Neolithic Era outright worshiped them as the firstborn of the Dark Mother.


              MtAw Homebrew: Even more Legacies, updated to 2E

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Nicolas Milioni View Post
                Have you noticed how many gods,even benevolent gods could very easily be Beasts? Anubis ,Tezcatlipoca,Sun Wukong. Michael the archangel,Thor,Hercules. All of them can be terrible,can create fear and have hungers to feed? Thor and Hercules feel like Heroes at first glance,but they're much wilder,much more bestial than your average Hero. They almost feel more like Beasts that simply have other Beasts as enemies
                Oh, absolutely. Gods are an interesting matter because they're neither and depending on where you look some gods (especially more primeval ones) seem more like Beast's inspiration than Hero's. My compass when it comes to that is the relation a god has with organized civilization. If a god supports it, it's more revelant to Heroes than Beasts. Fact it, most gods are antagonists to monsters because I believe that monsters are an older, outside threat by their own nature. Gods, the one people prayed to at least, are the human reflection of the divine, monsters are the inhuman one, but it's a difficult distinction to make at times, not helped by the fact that some gods are real jerks and some are related to monsters.

                My two cents is that monsters came before gods because monsters were the first gods, back when people lived in fear and prayed to be spared by them. Which makes monsters cool, if you ask me.

                I always thought interesting that most of the time monsters are not created by gods: they're just there, (sometimes from before gained power), sometimes breed, and it's up to the gods and heroes to smack them down.. I'll talk a little about this in the third part.

                As for Thor and Hercules I get what you're saying (and it's an idea with a solid foundation), but to me they're more examples of what can be wrong about Heroes. Both are arguably the greatest heroes of their respective mythology, but they're also larger than life and flawed, which I think is part of the deal.

                Originally posted by Nicolas Milioni View Post
                Oh another note. Do you think Beasts would say pangaens are Family?
                Damn, good question. It's something I thought about but the truth is I don't have a good answer, but yeah: I'd say yes, old Family and probably among the eldest relatives of the Dark Mother, to the point I'm not sure whether they can be considered brothers and sisters or uncles and aunts.

                But Beasts are old, really, really old, with the Dark Mother being even older, so I think Pangeans do qualify for Family. Possibly among the first children of the Dark Mother, from a Begotten perspective. They're creatures of supernatural might that crave for something, after all, and the Nightmare Mom made all of those

                It's something that dates back to the birth of spirits, the formation of the Primordial Dream and serious setting mysteries like those, so it's difficult to have a clear answer. But it's something quite interesting to think about.
                Last edited by Cinder; 01-20-2018, 09:41 PM.


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                • #9
                  Originally posted by 21C Hermit View Post


                  I'm not Cinder, but hell yeah. I'd say they're like the grandparents of your grandparents that lived through what you see in your History textbooks. I wouldn't be surprised if Beasts in the Neolithic Era outright worshiped them as the firstborn of the Dark Mother.
                  Yup, pretty much how I'd have them in a Neolithic Beast Game


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                  I write about Beast: The Primordial a lot

                  This is what I'm working on

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                  • #10
                    This might've made Beast finally click fully with me (i am also a great fan of scion).
                    So while reading your analyses i was thinking back to when i first read the book. While reading there was a thought that was nibbling in the back of my mind.
                    I kept having the feeling that in a way the Beast are very anti-masquerade (not the game, the supernatural secret). What i would want was beyond their hunger Horrors had a deep and abiding desire to be known, to be talked about, named and have stories written about them.
                    So this, the idea of the building of the legend, and the effect that such a legend would have on the Beast life, would be what i would be interested in Beast (much more than the lessons).
                    Tho i would like the game to have the building up of legend to be more incorporated into it. Initially i was playing with the idea that at the start a horror is barely more than a silhouette. When its legend spreads and it grows stronger it starts to get more and more defined and eventually even gaining a name.

                    Ugh i feel like i'm rambling. Anyway great analysis, wish i could +1 twice.


                    Currently running: Scion 2nd Edition. Les Légendes Currently playing: Being a dad for a 2year old daughter and a newborn son.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Maitrecorbo View Post
                      This might've made Beast finally click fully with me (i am also a great fan of scion).
                      So while reading your analyses i was thinking back to when i first read the book. While reading there was a thought that was nibbling in the back of my mind.
                      I kept having the feeling that in a way the Beast are very anti-masquerade (not the game, the supernatural secret). What i would want was beyond their hunger Horrors had a deep and abiding desire to be known, to be talked about, named and have stories written about them.
                      So this, the idea of the building of the legend, and the effect that such a legend would have on the Beast life, would be what i would be interested in Beast (much more than the lessons).
                      Tho i would like the game to have the building up of legend to be more incorporated into it. Initially i was playing with the idea that at the start a horror is barely more than a silhouette. When its legend spreads and it grows stronger it starts to get more and more defined and eventually even gaining a name.

                      Ugh i feel like i'm rambling. Anyway great analysis, wish i could +1 twice.
                      That's something I play with as well. Some of my house rules for Beast involve your legend growing as your Lair does.

                      For example, I give the players options to personalize their character further with custom Atavisms and Nightmares each time they buy a dot of Lair. When that happens I ask them if there's a power among those they have they'd like to change a bit and how. It's supposed to represent the character gaining awareness and deeper understanding of their Horror and the fear they embody. Basically previews of what they would become as Incarnates, but it makes each player to feel more special, helps them to keep part of their character arc in focus and it's overall just a nice little touch that does not break the game in the slightest.

                      Glad you like this analysis too! Among all my goals and hopes for this series, the one where they help people to give a chance to Beast is probably the main one, so it's good to know that's working


                      Cinder's Comprehensive Collection of Creations - Homebrew Hub

                      I write about Beast: The Primordial a lot

                      This is what I'm working on

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                      • #12
                        I like this. I really feel like, even moreso than "family," one of the major themes of BtP is stories--the ones we tell about ourselves, the ones others tell about us, and how we positions ourselves within them or against them.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mad_Maudlin View Post
                          I like this. I really feel like, even moreso than "family," one of the major themes of BtP is stories--the ones we tell about ourselves, the ones others tell about us, and how we positions ourselves within them or against them.
                          Thanks! It's a cool theme to explore, though I admit it's less immediate than creating a Brood, interacting with other monsters, managing the urges and dealing with Heroes. Still, I do think it's an important one for Beast, to the point I agree it's pretty much one of the central themes.

                          It did not get much spotlight when compared to others, but it's there. Plus, it's a really interesting theme to think about as a Storyteller (seriously, it offers dozens of plot hooks and ideas) and allows to do some almost meta shenanigans
                          Last edited by Cinder; 01-22-2018, 07:30 AM.


                          Cinder's Comprehensive Collection of Creations - Homebrew Hub

                          I write about Beast: The Primordial a lot

                          This is what I'm working on

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Very cool stuff. Do you think that our modern relationship with monsters would have an affect on Beasts or the Primordial Dream? In the past few decades, monster media has tended toward portraying their subjects in a more sympathetic light, and we can't forget the rise of the supernatural romance genre. Perhaps there are people who end up romanticizing Beasts, or people who want to become one, copycat terrorists imitating you because there's something about you that's really and dark and dangerous but also alluring.

                            I've posted about this a while back in the Character Idea Thread, but I'm also interested in the point when a modern monster makes it into the Dream; some of the original, iconic creatures from Dungeons & Dragons, for instance, have definitely inspired nightmares.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by espritdecalmar View Post
                              Very cool stuff. Do you think that our modern relationship with monsters would have an affect on Beasts or the Primordial Dream? In the past few decades, monster media has tended toward portraying their subjects in a more sympathetic light, and we can't forget the rise of the supernatural romance genre.
                              I think it's probably too recent to have had much effect on the Primodial Dream - though seeds of it have always been around. But it would have an effect on Beasts, people who perceive them or the Dream, and even Heroes.

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